Feb 05, 2023  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Academic Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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HU 430 - Epistemology

3 lecture hours 0 lab hours 3 credits
Course Description
Epistemology, also known as the theory of knowledge, together with metaphysics, constitutes the traditional core of philosophy. What is knowledge, and how does it differ from mere belief? How do I know that I know anything? Is certainty even a reasonable objective? Among the topics within epistemology’s ambit are the challenge of skepticism, the justification of belief, belief in an external world, the nature of perceptual knowledge, memory, the justification for belief in other minds, the difference between “knowledge that” and “knowledge how,” theories of truth, and the ethics of belief. Both historical and contemporary texts will be used. (prereq: none) 
Course Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the fundamental concepts of the theory of knowledge
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the essential problems of epistemology: the nature of knowledge and belief, the justification of knowledge claims, the nature of perception, the nature of truth, the possibility of knowledge independent of experience, the existence of other minds, memory, and the ethics of belief

Prerequisites by Topic
  • None 

Course Topics
  • Introduction: the possibility of (and criteria for) knowledge
  • Skepticism
  • Perception
  • Challenges to knowledge
  • Foundationalism and Contextualism
  • Externalist theories
  • Empirical dogmas
  • The problem of induction
  • Models of scientific explanation
  • Science as myth
  • The rejection of epistemology
  • Exams

Dr. Jon Borowicz

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