Spring 2019

NOTE: This data is offered for your convenience only. The schedule data is updated regularly and may not reflect recent changes to the Schedule of Classes. For full, up-to-date course information please visit the Office of the Registrar's website. Thank you.

245 - Professional Ethics


Instructor: Brian Gatsch
Time/s: ARR

This online course focuses on some of the ethical issues that arise in the context of professional life.  Beginning with an overview of three major ethical theories, we will consider how these theories, which traditionally concern personal morality, apply to life in a professional setting.  We will also examine the roles and obligations associated with professional life. What is the relationship between personal and professional codes of conduct? What distinguishes professions from other occupations?  Through the lens of various professions, we will look at issues such as lying and truth-telling, whistleblowing, confidentiality, and the obligations of professionals toward the public.  Using a combination of readings, case studies, and online discussion groups, we will explore these ideas in a philosophical manner, looking to understand the ethical principles at work.  This course will give students a solid introduction to ethical reasoning and will help to develop the tools necessary to apply ethical principles to real-world settings.
Required text:
Ethics Across the Professions: A Reader for Professional Ethics, 2nd ed, Clancy Martin, Wayne Vaught, and Robert C. Solomon, editors. OUP. (ISBN-13: 978-0190298708/ISBN-10: 0190298707)

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).