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PH 101 Introduction to Philosophical Thinking
Hartley, Harrison


Mission Statement: The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

Vision Statement: Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.

Course

PH 101 Introduction to Philosophical Thinking

Semester

S2J 2006 PV

Faculty

Hartley, Harrison

Title

Senior Adjunct Instructor

Degrees/Certificates

B.A.
B.S.Ed.
M.A.

Office Location

Before and after class and by apointment.

Office Hours

Before and after class and by apointment.

Daytime Phone

(816) 279-8100; leave a message.

E-Mail

Harrison.Hartley@park.edu

harrisonhartley@wildmail.com (for fastest response).

Semester Dates

13 March - 7 May, 2006

Class Days

--T----

Class Time

5:30 - 9:50 PM

Prerequisites

None.

Credit Hours

3


Textbook:
About Philosophy (9th Ed.) by Robert Paul Wolff.

Additional Resources:
Additional material will be provided.


Course Description:
An entry into philosophy by one or two routes:  an exploration of philosophical problems through reading and discussing selections from the great thinkers or a lecture-discussion survey of philosophy conceived in the broadest fashion.  3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:
Bertrand Russell once remarked: "Many people would rather die than think. In fact, they do!" An introduction to philosophy is an introduction to the practice of clear, accurate, objective thinking, and includes integrating the results of these skills into a humane, informed, effective worldview. This course is dedicated to the proposition that anyone who wishes to do so can expand the personal analytical, critical, observational, and communicative abilities necessary to a better understanding of self, others, and the world, and so to a richer participation in it. Class sessions will reflect this breadth by including lectures, discussions, video essays, demonstrations using artifacts from around the world, and presentations from the work of great minds in art, literature, religion, science, and politics.

  Instructor Learning Outcomes

  1. Class members who successfully complete this course will, at a minimum:
  2. 1. Be able to define 80 to 100 terms commonly used in philosophy.
  3. 2. Be able to name and describe the general disciplines of philosophy.
  4. 3. Be able to identify and discuss empiricism, rationalism, and mysticism.
  5. 4. Be able to identify, define, analyze, and correctly use elements of logic (including the recognition of common logical fallacies).
  6. 5. Be able to define and describe the tension between subjectivity and objectivity.
  7. 6. Be able to describe and explain the scientific method.
  8. 7. Be able to describe and explain the universal characteristics of religion, the three classical proofs of God, and the positions of atheists, theists, and agnostics.
  9. 8. Be able to identify the foundation ideas of Western Philosophy including those of the Pre-Socratics, the Socratics, Stoics, Epicureans, Scholasticism, and key Renaissance and  post-Renaissance thinkers like Descartes, Kant, Hobbes, Bacon, Kierkegaard, and others.
  10. 9. Be able to frame a coherent statement of current personal philosophy.
Class Assessment:
There will be four readings/lecture tests, two papers requiring analysis and response to a problem of interest to the class member and related to the readings, and cumulative midterm and final examinations.

Grading:
Four Readings Tests @ 10% each:     40%
Cumulative Midterm Examination:     15%
Analytical Paper #1:                10%
Analytical Paper #2:                15%
Cumulative Final Examination:       20%

Late Submission of Course Materials:
Assignments may be submitted late with the instructor's approval and as long as there is sufficient time for proper evaluation. All work must be completed by the end of the last class.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
Please turn off all cell 'phones (or place them on silent mode). We will break for food about 6:40; please feel free to eat in the room. You are welcome to record lectures if you wish.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:
Before class, consider the following:

1. As you now understand it, what is philosophy and what good is it?

2. What is truth? (How does it relate to knowledge and how to belief?)

3. Consider Bertrand Rusell's wry remark above (under Educational Philosophy). Attack or defend this remark. If you agree, why? If not, why not?

Class Dates

General Class Topics

Assignments (CH.# refers to Wolff text).

Tests, presentations.

Meeting 1
14 March

Atoms, Empty Space, and Opinion: the birth of philosophy and science.

For next time, read Ch. 2 and material provided.

Test 1 - the Ionian Awakening.

Meeting  2
21 March

An old Irishman stumbles into a braw. "Pardon me," he asks, "is this a private fight or can anybody get into it?"

For next time, read Ch. 3 and material provided.

Test 2 - the Platonic revolution.

Meeting 3
28 March

When I make up my mind, what is it I make up?

For next time, read Ch. 5, material provided, and the midterm review.

Test 3 - what comes next to physics.
*Midterm next time.

Meeting 4
4 April

The Good, the Bad, and the Ghost in the Machine.

For next time, read Ch.8 and material provided; paper one due.

MIDTERM EXAMINATION.

Meeting 5
11 April

The experience of being alive: an interview with Joseph Campbell.

For next time, read Ch.7 and essays provided.

*Paper one due.

Meeting 6
18 April

Kierkegaard's mistake (OR: bring home the Bacon!)

For next time, read and respond to the essays provided.

Test 4
*Paper 2 due next time.

Meeting 7
25 April

Viva le projet! (A nod to Sartre.)

Matters of balance: making peace with reality. *NB: Final Review!

*Paper 2 due.

Meeting 8
2 May

The life of reason guided by compassion.

"A life without festivity is like a long road without an inn." -Democritus

Final examination.


Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life.   Park University 2005-2006 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85-87

Plagiarism:
Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. Park University 2005-2006 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85-87
Plagiarism is stealing and carries the same penalties.

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "WH".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

Park University 2005-2006 Undergraduate Catalog Page 89
If you must come late, please do! (Better late than not at all!) Notify the instructor of absences in advance if possible; otherwise as soon afterward as possible in order to have the absence entered as "excused."

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all learners that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to learners concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the American with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding learners with disabilities and, to the extent of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: http://www.park.edu/disability .
The instructor will be pleased to help with any arrangements to make the class experience productive and pleasant.

Additional Information:

Be able to B.S.Ed.

Copyright:

This material is copyrighted and may not be reused without author permission.