Course Syllabus: Philosophy 101

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Course Description

Philosophy is a mystifying, confounding, and wondrous discipline that affects virtually every aspect of human existence. While it attempts to consider the big issues of our lives, including our very existence, the nature of the world, whether or not knowledge is possible, what actions and thoughts are considered to be ethical, and more, philosophy--in one way or another--strives to place things in a meaningful context.
While often considered the purview of humorless old men that spend their lives in ivy-covered towers, philosophy is actually an integral part of the human experience. Indeed, it is often noted that most everyone engages in some sort of philosophy--whether they realize it or not. It is the aim of this course to introduce the student to the basics of philosophy and to provide a better appreciation and awareness of philosophy in a historical and, more importantly, personal context.
This course provides a brief overview of the academic discipline known as philosophy, a succinct history of philosophy from Ancient Greece to our modern day, a lexicon of philosophical terms and concepts, as well as an examination of the sub-disciplines of philosophy and several of the major philosophies that have shaped our world since the times of the pre-Socratic philosophers.

Course Requirements

This course will not require you to have previous experience in any particular area but you should have a high school reading level. No books will be required.

Course Outline


Lesson 1: What Is Philosophy?

Lesson 2: Coming to Terms: A Philosophical Lexicon, Part I

Lesson 3: A Manner of Speaking: A Philosophical Lexicon, Part II

Lesson 4: Metaphysics

Lesson 5: Epistemology

Lesson 6: Philosophy of Mind

Lesson 7: Philosophy of Religion

Lesson 8: Ethics, Part I

Lesson 9: Ethics, Part II

Lesson 10: Logic

Lesson 11: Social & Political Philosophy

Lesson 12: Unsolved Problems & Paradoxes in Philosophy

Lesson 13: An Overview of the Great Philosophers

Course Materials

All course material will be provided in the lessons and netlinks. There are no required materials to purchase before taking the class.

Grading Policy

Each lesson will include a lesson review quiz along with an assignment. Students will successfully complete this course by mastering all learning outcomes with 70% or higher overall grade.

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  • Define what philosophy is.
  • Describe the philosophical lexicon.
  • Know metaphysics.
  • Know epistemology.
  • Describe philosophy of mind.
  • Describe philosophy of religion.
  • Know ethics in relation to philosophy.
  • Describe logic and how it is used in philosophy.
  • Know social and political philosophy.
  • Identify unsolved problems and paradoxes in philosophy.
  • Know the works of the great philosophers, and
  • Demonstrate mastery of lesson content at levels of 70% or higher.
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Assessment Guide

An Introduction5
Lesson 1 Assignment25
Lesson 1: What Is Philosophy?9
Lesson 2 Assignment25
Lesson 2: Coming to Terms: A Philosophical Lexicon, Part I9
Lesson 3 Assignment25
Lesson 3: A Manner of Speaking: A Philosophical Lexicon, Part II9
Lesson 4 Assignment25
Lesson 4: Metaphysics9
Lesson 5 Assignment25
Lesson 5: Epistemology7
Lesson 6 Assignment25
Lesson 6: Philosophy of Mind9
Lesson 7 Assignment25
Lesson 7: Philosophy of Religion9
Lesson 8 Assignment25
Lesson 8: Ethics, Part I6
Lesson 9 Assignment25
Lesson 9: Ethics, Part II10
Lesson 10 Assignment25
Lesson 10: Logic10
Lesson 11 Assignment25
Lesson 11: Social & Political Philosophy9
Lesson 12 Assignment25
Lesson 12: Unsolved Problems & Paradoxes in Philosophy9
Lesson 13 Assignment25
Lesson 13: An Overview of the Great Philosophers9
The Final Exam51
Total Points:495
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