Timothy McGrew, Chair
Main Office: 3004 Moore Hall
Telephone: (269) 387-4389
Fax: (269) 387-4390
Laura Ashley Atkins
Undergraduate Advisor: David Paul
Room 3021, Moore Hall
Students majoring in philosophy may go into teaching, law, medicine, journalism, government, computer programming, business or any number of other careers. Philosophy is attractive to those who are prepared to search for understanding for its own sake, who do not expect ready-made answers or easy solutions, and who are willing to subject their assumptions to critical scrutiny. Prospective philosophy teachers, whether at the university, junior college, or even high school level, should anticipate continuing for an advanced degree.
The Philosophy Department offices are located on the third floor of Moore Hall. Students are invited to visit the department office and the offices of faculty at any time.
3000-level courses: Each semester detailed course descriptions are posted outside the department office prior to pre-registration. If you are in doubt about whether you have adequate background for taking a course, talk with the instructor.
Undergraduates with junior standing and 12 hours of Philosophy may enroll in 5000-level courses. Specific prerequisites may be added to individual courses.
Robert Friedmann Philosophy Prize
A prize named in honor of Dr. Friedmann, the first person to teach philosophy at Western, is awarded annually to an outstanding senior philosophy student. In some years two such prizes are awarded.
Students Not Majoring or Minoring in Philosophy
Students not majoring or minoring in philosophy find that philosophy adds intellectual depth to their major field of study. Philosophy by its nature touches on many areas of life and thought, frequently from a perspective that students find valuable and exciting. Non-majors often consider their philosophy courses an essential element in their general intellectual growth.
In recognition of this, the department offers a wide range of courses for non-major/minors. Students who wish to sharpen their critical thinking skills should consider PHIL 2200, PHIL 2250, or for more advanced students PHIL 3200 or 3250. Students interested in a general introduction to philosophy should consider PHIL 2000; students interested in a philosophical approach to a more specialized area should consider some of our upper-level courses, such as 3500 (Foundations of the Modern Worldview), PHIL 3120 (Philosophy of Art), PHIL 3550 (Philosophy of Science), and PHIL 3340 (Biomedical Ethics), among others. Students interested in a more detailed appreciation of the central problems of philosophy should consider such courses as PHIL 3310 (Moral Philosophy), PHIL 3320 (Theory of Knowledge) and PHIL 3330 (Metaphysics). Students interested in the history of philosophy should consider PHIL 3000 (Ancient and Medieval Philosophy) and PHIL 3010 (History of Modern Philosophy).