In the academic context, philosophy is mostly analytic, meaning that the focus is on what concepts entail, e.g., rights are claims we can make on others. There is a broad range of topics discussed in academic philosophy: epistemology (theory of knowledge), politics, metaphysics, ethics, metaethics, philosophy of language, and the like.

Some courses offered by the philosophy department feature precisely the same material each semester, some do not (probably due to different instructors.) In editing, be sure to indicate whether a course is likely to include very similar content in the future.

Common ConceptsEdit

Much of philosophy is conceptual analysis, i.e., the 'taking apart' of a concept to see how it may be used in argumentation. Nearly all philosophy classes revolve around a few particular concepts. For example, Philosophy of Freedom may ask what justice, ownership, or rights are. The texts of the class will provide several answers to these questions and also, more importantly, give the reader good reason to hold such conceptions. The tutors job is to help the student identify conclusions and premises.

In doing this, it would be helpful to ask the student to write a philosopher's argument in standard form. An example is given below.

  1. I am a duck.
  2. If I am a duck, then I'm drunk.
  3. Therefore, I'm drunk.

Here we have two premises and a conclusion marked by the signifier "therefore". Encouraging students to do this with every text they read, or to at least do this mentally, will help them understand criticize any weaknesses the argument has. For example, our second premise is weak. We have no good reasons to believe that my being a duck guarantee's that I'm drunk. This premise is unsound. Ultimately, this is what ever professor wants to see their students do because this is essentially philosophy.


  • PHIL 110 - Introductory Logic
  • PHIL 111 - Introductory Philosophy
  • PHIL 205 - Economics and Wealth Creation
  • PHIL 260 - Ancient Philosophy
  • PHIL 320a - Philosophy of Freedom
  • PHIL 324 - Law and Morality
  • PHIL 344 - Issues and Methods in Analytic Philosophy
  • PHIL 435 - Decision Theory
  • PHIL 441 - Theory of Knowledge
  • PHIL 450 - Philosophy of Mind