Fall 2022 Course Syllabus
Course: PHIL-1301 (Section: 2E, CRN: 92837)
Introduction to Philosophy
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Instructor Information
Instructor Nicholas Mires
Email miresnb@lamarpa.edu
Phone 4099846337
Office Hours None.
Additional Contact Information None
Course Information
Description A study of major issues in philosophy and/or the work of major philosophical figures in philosophy. Topics in philosophy may include theories of reality, theories of knowledge, theories of value, and their practical applications.
Required Textbooks Textbook Purchasing Statement: A student attending Lamar State College Port Arthur is not under any obligation to purchase a textbook from the college-affiliated bookstore. The same textbook may also be available from an independent retailer, including an online retailer.

1.     An Introduction to Philosophy by Russ Payne

2.     Introduction to Philosophy: Ethics edited by George Matthews

3.     Introduction to Philosophy: Philosophy of Religion edited by Beau Branson
Additional Materials/Resources None.
  • ENGL-0302 College Reading Skills
  • ENGL-0327 Integrated Reading and Writing
Learning Outcomes

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, students will:
1.     Read, analyze, and critique philosophical texts.
2.     Demonstrate knowledge of key concepts, major arguments, problems, and terminology in philosophy.
3.     Present logically persuasive arguments both orally and in writing.
4.     Demonstrate critical thinking skills in evaluation and application of philosophical concepts to various aspects of life.
5.     Evaluate the personal and social responsibilities of living in a diverse world. 
Core Objectives The following four Core Objectives must be addressed in each course approved to fulfill this category requirement:
1.     Critical Thinking Skills: To include creative thinking, innovation, inquiry, and analysis, evaluation and synthesis of information.
2.     Communication Skills: To include effective development, interpretation and expression of ideas through written, oral and visual communication.
3.     Personal Responsibility: To include the ability to connect choices, actions and consequences to ethical decision-making
4.     Social Responsibility: To include intercultural competence, knowledge of civic responsibility, and the ability to engage effectively in regional, national, and global communities.
Lecture Topics Outline
Course Outline

Course Introduction and policies
Discussion of Syllabus
Introduction to Philosophy
How to do Philosophy
Ancient Philosophy
Plato’s allegory of the cave
Rationalism and Empiricism
Philosophy of Science
Philosophy of Mind
Love and Happiness
Meta Ethics
Right Action and Social Justice
Aren’t Right and Wrong Just Matters of Opinion?
Can We Have Ethics without Religion?
How Can I Be a Better Person?
What’s in it for Me? On Egoism and Social Contract Theory
Utilitarianism and Kantian Deontology
Feminism and Feminist Ethics
Evolutionary Ethics
The Intertwining of Philosophy and Religion in the Western Tradition
Reasons to Believe – Theoretical Arguments
Non-Standard Arguments for God’s Existence
Reasons Not to Believe
Debunking Arguments against Theistic Belief
From Philosophy of (Mono)theism to Philosophy of Religions
Major Assignments Schedule All online assignment dates can be found in the course Blackboard calendar. Face-to-face classes may take some quizzes and tests in class. You can also find the assignments due date by clicking on the assignment in Blackboard. Assignment due dates may change. If this happens, I will try to post an announcement on Blackboard.

Assignment Descriptions
All written assignments should follow these formatting guidelines: use Microsoft Word, 12 point Times New Roman font, and follow MLA formatting.
If the minimum length for an assignment is not reached, you will not receive full credit. A Works Cited page does not count towards your page length. Also, use in-text citations when applicable. 
Discussion board Posts (30 percent of grade)
The rules, topics, and dates for the discussions are in Blackboard. They have their own tab. I drop the lowest three discussion grades.
Journal Assignments (15 percent of grade)
The journal assignment descriptions and dates are in Blackboard. The have their own tab.
Logic Assignment (5 percent of grade)
Go to https://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/. Read the information. Select five of the fallacies from the top of the page and give an example of this fallacy that you have encountered in life. The example must not be similar to the example given on the site.
Format example:
1. Fallacy - Ad hominem
Example of the fallacy: Jim gave several reasons why his friend Paul should not break the speed limit while driving. Paul dismissed Jim’s arguments by calling him a coward.
Quizzes (20 percent of your grade)
The due dates are in the Blackboard calendar for online classes. Face-to-face classes will take the quizzes in class. I drop the lowest two quiz scores.
Common Assignment (15% of grade)
The Common Assignment is an oral presentation. You must create it using Microsoft PowerPoint. Attach audio discussing each slide. The audio should be at least 6 minutes in length, and have ten slides.
Select a philosopher from one of our textbooks. Research a philosophical concept/argument they defended. Some philosophers and concepts will be hard to find information about. A minimum of two unique sources is required. Wikipedia is not a credible source. Your class textbooks will not count as one of the two sources. You should attempt to use at least one book as a source of information. If you cannot find a useful book, you may use a published article.
As an example, you could select John Stewart Mill and his view on utilitarianism, or Aquinas and one of his arguments for the existence of God. Make sure your discussion is about a specific philosopher’s position. Several philosophers support utilitarianism or arguments for God’s existence, but there are many different versions of these positions.
Your presentation should resemble the following outline with clear transitions into each section:
1.     Introduction.
Briefly introduce yourself, the philosopher you selected, and the concept being discussed. Be sure to describe why you chose this position to discuss, and briefly introduce why you accept or reject it. This section should not be longer than thirty seconds.
2.     The philosopher’s position on the concept/argument.
Give a detailed explanation of the philosopher’s concept/argument. Do not include biographical information like the philosopher’s birth date. Focus on the concept/argument.
3.     The reasoning (evidence) behind why you accepted or rejected the philosopher’s position.
If you accept the philosopher’s position, explain why and defend it from any objections you think people may have.
If you rejected the philosopher’s position, elaborate on your chosen position. You should include evidence for your position. Pay close attention to these sections (found in the article listed below):
a.     Make an argument to support your thesis
b.     In order to strengthen your argument, anticipate and answer objections to it
4.     Implications of decision.
How is your decision impacted by your core beliefs? Is your decision ethical? Why or why not?
Describe how this choice affects your worldview by answering the following questions: How might accepting or rejecting this concept affect your personal and social responsibilities of living in a diverse world? How will this choice affect your interactions with people from other cultural backgrounds?  How might your choice affect the way you interact with society on the regional, national, and global levels?
5.     Conclusion.
Final Exam (15 percent of grade)
The final will include questions taken from the quizzes. The due date for the final is in the Blackboard calendar.
Final Exam Date December 2, 2022 - 8:0 AM   Through  December 2, 2022 - 8:0 AM
Grading Scale  90 - 100=A 80 - 89=B  70 - 79=C   60 - 69=D  Below 59 = F
Determination of
Final Grade
Course Evaluation
Final grades will be calculated according to the following criteria:
1.     Tests and Quizzes                                           35%
2.     Assignments                                                   50%
3.     Common Assignment                                     15%
Course Policies
Instructor Policies 1.    All homework must be typed and use MLA format: https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/mla_style/mla_formatting_and_style_guide/mla_general_format.html
2.    All homework, papers, and tests must be the work of the student only. First offense of plagiarism will result minimally in a zero on the assignment. A second offense will result in dismissal from the course. (Student not dropped from course.)
3.    Pen/pencil and paper are required.
4.    Mature behavior is expected at all times.
5.    Access to Blackboard and your LIT email is required. Frequently check for any new announcements.
6.    Complete assignments and submit them by the due date. Late work will be considered only in the case of a documentable emergency beyond the student’s control. You may turn them in early but not after the due date. Technical difficulties and any other issues must be resolved before the due date, and they will not result in a time extension. If you have issues with Blackboard, use the Technical Support link. Any emails requesting assistance with the assignment must be sent to me on a weekday 48 hours before the assignment is due. You must include your name, course, and class section in your email. Example of course and section: PHIL 1301 3A1
7.    I drop the lowest 3 discussion and quiz grades. You may turn assignments in early, but not after the due date. Technical difficulties and any other issues must be resolved before the due date, and they will not result in a time extension. If you have issues with Blackboard, use the Technical Support link.
Attendance Policy None
Additional Information None
Institutional Policies
MyLSCPA Be sure to check your campus email and Course Homepage using MyLSCPA campus web portal. You can also access your grades, transcripts, academic advisors, degree progress, and other services through MyLSCPA.
Academic Honesty Academic honesty is expected from all students, and dishonesty in any form will not be tolerated. Please consult the LSCPA policies (Academic Dishonesty section in the Student Handbook) for consequences of academic dishonesty.
ADA Considerations The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the the Office for Disability Services Coordinator, Room 231, in the Madison Monroe Building. The phone number is (409) 984-6241.
COVID 19 Information The Lamar State College Port Arthur (LSCPA) Student Code of Conduct COVID 19 Policy requires students who have been exposed to COVID 19 or diagnosed with COVID 19 to report their condition on the COVID 19 Notification Form (available via a link on the Student Code of Conduct COVID19 webpage). This information will be provided to the Dean of Student Services. In addition, this policy requires all students to wear face coverings in compliance with the criteria included in the policy. For more information please refer to the COVID 19 link on the LSCPA website.
Facility Policies No food or tobacco products are allowed in the classroom. Only students enrolled in the course are allowed in the classroom, except by special instructor permission. Use of electronic devices is prohibited.
HB 2504 This syllabus is part of LSCPA's efforts to comply with Texas House Bill 2504.
Mandatory Reporting of Child Abuse and Neglect As per Texas law and LSCPA policy, all LSCPA employees, including faculty, are required to report allegations or disclosures of child abuse or neglect to the designated authorities, which may include a local or state law enforcement agency or the Texas Department of Family Protective Services. For more information about mandatory reporting requirements, see LSCPA's Policy and Procedure Manual.
Title IX and Sexual Misconduct LSCPA is committed to establishing and maintaining an environment that is free from all forms of sex discrimination, including sexual harassment, sexual violence, and other forms of sexual misconduct. All LSCPA employees, including faculty, have the responsibility to report disclosures of sexual misconduct, including sexual harassment, sexual assault (including rape and acquaintance rape), domestic violence, dating violence, relationship violence, or stalking, to LSCPA's Title IX Coordinator, whose role is to coordinate the college's response to sexual misconduct. For more information about Title IX protections, faculty reporting responsibilities, options for confidential reporting, and the resources available for support visit LSCPA's Title IX website.
Clery Act Crime Reporting For more information about the Clery Act and crime reporting, see the Annual Security & Fire Safety Report and the Campus Security website.

Grievance / Complaint / Concern If you have a grievance, complaint, or concern about this course that has not been resolved through discussion with the Instructor, please consult the Department Chair.
Department Information
Inmate Instruction
Chair:Dr. Michelle Davis
Phone:(409) 984-6341