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PH 101 Introduction to Philosophical Thinking
Alexander, Kathleen M.


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

U1FF 2006 FA

Faculty

Alexander, Kathleen M.

Title

Adjunct Instructor

Office Location

Classroom

Office Hours

Before and after class and by appointment

Daytime Phone

509 / 230 - 2041

Other Phone

509 / 244 - 2020

E-Mail

kathleen.alexander@park.edu

Semester Dates

May to July

Class Days

--T-R--

Class Time

7:45 - 10:25 PM

Credit Hours

3


Textbook:
Chaffee, John. The Philosophers Way: Thinking Critically About Profound Ideas. Pearson-Prentice Hall. 2005.   ISBN #0-13-048069-X.


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:
A learning environment conducive for maximum student progress utilizes approaches relevant to assimilating the target information. In the class Introduction to Philosophical Thinking, these approaches all center on immersing ourselves in philosophic discussion. We will be covering a lot of material, so the assignments are designed to help you to delve more in depth into the ideas and look at them with a critical eye. Through short lectures, rousing discussion with other students, and dedicated effort on your part, we will come to understand and be able to respond to some of the theories of Western Philosophies' great thinkers. This will require a fair amount of writing. Yes—writing! You cannot learn philosophy through multiple-choice exams. If you can write well, you can think well.

  Instructor Learning Outcomes

  1. · Students will be able to recognize presuppositions and assumptions as they identify and discuss the arguments for, and the criticisms against, a broad range of philosophical concepts.
  2. · Students will be able to interpret philosophical issues and formulate questions to arrive at meaningful answers.
  3. · Through critical responses to writing prompts, students will demonstrate an understanding of the implications of these concepts in today's society and be able to apply this knowledge to their personal lives.
  4. · Students will be able to thoughtfully and politely express their personal insights and relate them to other students in class discussion.
  5. · Students will develop a clear statement of personal ideology that can be critiqued and defended.
Class Assessment:
· This is a discussion class, so participation is mandatory. It is hard to participate if you are not in class. I will award 3 points each for 16 of the 18 class days for a total of 48 points possible for attendence.
o Read the material assigned! I will try to make each class as interesting and challenging as possible.  I expect the student to be an active learner, to be a part of the class, and to take intellectual risks.
o If you will be gone an extended amount of time, please let me know so that we can work something out.
§ In the case of emergencies (hospitalization, death in the family, etc.) this attendance policy is waived.
· Two small in-class personal essays are given, one on the first day of class, one on the second-to-last day of class. A reflective in-class essay will serve as the class final. These are each worth 10 points for a total of 30 points.
· Throughout the chapters, I have specified response questions I would like you to address.
o Each response question should be at least a good-sized paragraph (around 200 words), single-spaced. Some response questions will call for more and some for less for a variety of reasons.
§ These must be posted online no later than midnight Friday.
§ Each question is worth 4 points for a total of 76 points possible.
o Then reply critically to at least 3 other posts by midnight Monday.
§ Each critical reply is worth 3 points for a total of 72 points possible.
o The purpose of this assignment is to get you into the habit of thinking abstractly and critically. I want you to take that subject to an abstract level and address meaning or implication or ramifications, etc.
· Throughout the chapters, I have also specified questions to be addressed in a personal journal. Each journal question is worth 5 points for a total of 85 points possible.
o The journal may take any physical format. This is akin to a traditional diary, with specific direction. Each subject should be taken to an abstract level and address meaning, implication, consequences, ramifications, etc.
o The purpose of this assignment is to get you to start thinking abstractly on a personal level.
o I will look at the journals every Tuesday and collect them for final grading on the last day of class.

Grading:
Grades are determined by the student's earned points (311 total possible) divided by 300 points. 90% - 100% = A, 80% - 89% = B, 70% - 79% = C.

Late Submission of Course Materials:
I will not accept anything (except your journal) that is not typed. I want you to do and understand the work. Therefore, late assignments will be accepted. However, they will receive a reduced grade.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
We are all learning. I expect you to treat others in this classroom with patience and respect. Assignments are due the date listed on the syllabus. Students should contact the instructor in advance if unable to attend class.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:
See Course Assessment and Course Schedule.

 

Class Activities

Week #1
WHAT IS PHILOSOPHY?,Meeting - 1,,Meeting - 1,

Internet Discussion: 1.3, 1.11

Journal Entry: 1.9, 1.10,,,,

Week #2
WHAT IS THE PHILOSOPHER'S WAY?,Meeting - 2,,Meeting - 2,

Internet Discussion: 2.3, 2.8

Journal Entry: 2.4, 2.5,,,,

Week #3
WHO AM I?,Meeting - 3,,Meeting - 3,

Internet Discussion: 3.6, 3.9

Journal Entry: 3.3, 3.8,,,,

Week #4
WHO AM I?, cont.,Meeting - 4,,Meeting - 4,

Internet Discussion: 3.10, 3.16

Journal Entry: 3.13, 3.14,,,,

Week #5
AM I FREE?,Meeting - 5,,Meeting - 5,

Internet Discussion: 4.6, 4.9

Journal Entry: 4.7, 4.8,,,,

Week #6
WHAT IS MORALITY?,Meeting - 6,,Meeting - 6,

Internet Discussion: 5.4, 5.5

Journal Entry: 5.1, 5.2,,,,

Week #7
WHAT IS MORALITY?, cont.,Meeting - 7,,Meeting - 7,

Internet Discussion: 5.9, 5.10, 5.13

Journal Entry: 5.7,,,,

Week #8
WHAT IS REAL?,Meeting - 8,,Meeting - 8,

Internet Discussion: 8.3, 8.4

Journal Entry: 8.3, 8.7,,,,

Week #9
COURSE WRAP-UP,,

In-class Final Essay

Celebratory Potluck,,


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

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

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 .

Additional Information:

Scoring Rubrics

 

 

Internet Discussion Questions

Value for each question: 4 points = 76 points total

1 point

On time.

1 point

Appropriate length and organized from beginning to end, identifying and analyzing important issues.

1 point

Descriptive and stimulating word choice to explain and enlighten.

1 point

Clear, well-formulated, and clearly structured sentences with correct mechanics, grammar, and spelling.

 

 

 

 

Replies to Internet Discussion Questions

Value for each reply: 3 points = 72 points total

1 point

On time.

1 point

Identifies, analyzes, and critiques the critical elements of postings. Offers provocative, thoughtful, supportive, and polite responses.

1 point

Clear, well-formulated, and clearly structured sentences with correct mechanics, grammar, and spelling.

 

 

 

 

Personal Journal

Value for each question: 5 points = 85 points total

1 point

Discussing the question.

1 point

Origional insight.

1 point

Personal application.

1 point

Appropriate length and organized from beginning to end, identifying and analyzing important issues.

1 point

Clear, well-formulated, and clearly structured sentences with correct mechanics, grammar, and spelling.

 

 

Copyright:

This material is copyright and can not be reused without author permission.

Last Updated:4/17/2006 1:18:19 PM