PHILOSOPHY (PHIL)College of Arts and Humanities
1128 Skinner Building, 301-405-5689
Chair: C. Morris (Chair)
Professors: J. Bub (Distinguished University Professor), P. Carruthers, L. Darden (Distinguished Scholar Teacher), M. Frisch, P. Greenspan, J. Horty, S. Kerstein, J. Levinson (Distinguished University Professor), C. Manekin, P. Pietroski (Distinguished Scholar Teacher), G. Rey, A. Stairs (Associate Chair)
Associate Professors: S. Dwyer, J. Maffie (Visiting), D. Moller
Assistant Professors: E. Eaker (Director of Undergraduate Studies), A. Lyon, E. Pacuit, R. Singpurwalla, A. Williams
Affiliate Professors: J. Segal (Res Assoc)
Adjunct Professors: R. Rynasiewicz (Adjunct Prof)
Adjunct Associate Professors: J. Mattingly, M. Silberstein
Professors Emeriti: J. Brown, C. Cherniak, R. Martin, S. Odell, F. Suppe
The study of philosophy develops students' reasoning and expository skills and increases their understanding of the foundations of human knowledge and value. The department views philosophy as an activity rather than a body of doctrine and students can expect to receive training in clear thinking, inventive synthesis, and precise expression. For some, this will serve as preparation for graduate studies in philosophy. However, philosophical skills are useful in professions such as law, medicine, government, business management, and in any field that demands intellectual rigor. The department offers a wide range of courses, including several that deal with the philosophy of various disciplines outside philosophy itself.
All philosophy programs aim to: (1) equip students with an understanding of a range of philosophers and philosophical problems, while encouraging as deep a critical engagement with those philosophers and problems as is feasible in the time available; (2) promote respect for the norms of: clarity; careful analysis; critical reflection; rational argument; sympathetic interpretation and understanding; and impartial pursuit of truth; (3) promote independence of thought and a critical and analytical approach, not only to theories and concepts, but also to the assumptions on which they are based; (4) equip students with the core skills involved in: careful reading, comprehension and compression of textual material; clear thinking; sound argumentation; and the clear and well-organized expression of ideas; (5) provide excellent teaching which is informed and invigorated by the research activities of faculty; (6) facilitate an awareness of the application of philosophical thought to other academic disciplines or to matters of public interest, encouraging students to apply philosophical skills more widely where appropriate.
Program Learning Outcomes
By the end of the program of study:
Requirements for the Major
The requirements for a major in Philosophy are as follows:
A total of at least 36 hours (twelve courses) in philosophy, not counting internship courses (PHIL 386). For a course to count toward a student's major, the grade in the course must be "C-" or above. For students who matriculated in September 2012 or later, the average of all grades counted toward the major must be 2.0 or greater. Therefore, grades of "C-" will have to be balanced with higher grades. (C- counts as 1.7 toward the GPA.)
The twelve philosophy courses must be distributed as follows:
Fifteen hours in a supporting area; the courses do not all have to be in the same department, but they should reflect a coherent program of study. The supporting area must be chosen in consultation with a departmental advisor. For further information, students should consult the undergraduate handbook on the philosophy department's website.
Requirements for the Minor
Requirements for the Minor
A total of at least 18 hours (six courses, at least three of which must be at least 300 level or above) in philosophy, not counting internship courses (PHIL 386). For a course to count toward a student's minor, the grade in the course must be "C-" or above. For students who matriculated in Septmeber 2012 or later, the average of all grades counted toward the minor must be 2.0 or greater. Therefore, grades of "C-" will have to be balanced with higher grades. ("C-" counts as 1.7 toward the GPA.) Candidates for the minor must satisfy the following distribution:
Philosophy Majors must be advised each semester before registration. firstname.lastname@example.org
The Philosophy Honors Program allows exceptional students the opportunity to work closely with a member of the Philosophy faculty on a project, typically a 30-40 page philosophical paper (i.e., “Honors Thesis”), during the final two semesters of his/her undergraduate career. The two semesters of independent study with the faculty advisor culminate in the student presenting and defending the Honors Thesis before a committee consisting of 2-3 faculty members in addition to the advisor.
Successful students will graduate with Honors in Philosophy. Requirements and Procedures
*or, for students graduating in December, the semester prior to the student’s next to last semester
Student Societies and Professional Organizations
The Philosophy Club holds weekly meetings during the semester to discuss philosophical topics of interest to members.
Scholarships and Financial Assistance
The Office of Student Financial Aid (OSFA) administers all types of federal, state and institutional financial assistance programs and, in cooperation with other university offices, participates in the awarding of scholarships to deserving students. For information, visit: www.financialaid.umd.edu .
Awards and Recognition
The W.E. Schlaretzki Prize is given to the most outstanding graduating senior each year. The Joseph and Beth Duckett Scholarship is given to the most outstanding junior.