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245 - Professional Ethics
Instructor: Brian Gatsch
352 - Theory of Knowledge
Instructor: Barbara Hannan
Time/s: TR 2:00-3:15
How can I know which of my beliefs are true, and which false? How can I know which appearances accurately represent reality, and which do not? It seems that we justify our beliefs by reference to other beliefs, but can we trace these chains of justification back to beliefs that are foundational (evident, self-justifying)? These seemingly simple questions open the door to one of the central areas of philosophy, epistemology. Philosophy of science (scientific methodology) is an important part of epistemology. What is the source of scientific theories? How does observable evidence confirm and disconfirm theories? When (if ever) does scientific theory become so well-confirmed that we may consider it fact? Is science purely rational, or are there inescapable irrational elements in science? In short: how much do we really know about ourselves and the world around us?
Texts: Michael Huemer, ed., Epistemology: Contemporary Readings;
Richard DeWitt, Worldviews: An Introduction to the History and Philosophy of Science (Second Edition).