Peace & Conflict Studies, Minor
Department of Philosophy
Sergio La Porta, Chair
Music Building, Room 102
Degrees and Programs Offered
BA in Philosophy, B.A.
BA in Philosophy - Religious Studies Option, B.A.
BA in Philosophy - Prelaw Option, B.A.
MN in Philosophy, Minor
MN in Peace & Conflict Studies, Minor
MN in Middle East Studies, Minor
Philosophy is one of the fundamental domains of human thought. It grows out of basic
life questions, including questions of ethics, religion, politics, and science. The
study of philosophy has had an historic role in the core of sound education, because
it helps sharpen skills of careful, independent thinking and aids people of all ages
in defining their most important values and beliefs. The examination of great philosophical
ideas, and the emphasis on clear reasoning and personal development that are involved
in philosophy serve as a strong foundation for life, regardless of one's career objectives.
The Department of Philosophy offers students the following opportunities for a rich and rewarding undergraduate experience: the traditional B.A. philosophy major, the prelaw option, the religious studies option, and the philosophy minor. The department provides ample opportunity for individual attention and student participation in its activities, e.g., student Philosophy Club, symposia, colloquia, etc.
The Prelaw Option emphasizes analytical skills, ethics, and values courses. Law schools seek a broad general education background and do not recommend any specific major. Students who enjoy philosophy and are interested in law should find this option an excellent way to combine their interests.
The Religious Studies Option offers objective methods for exploring the vast and complex human experience known as religion. This study is done with an appreciation for the variety and diversity of religious beliefs and expressions. This option provides students with an academic approach to religion in personal, social, historical, and global contexts.
Peace and Conflict Studies Minor Requirements
Peace and Conflict Studies (21-unit minor) prepares students, including potential leaders, with peacemaking and conflict management skills they can apply to daily life situations. This interdisciplinary minor is open to students in any academic discipline or chosen profession. The program has been developed to provide an interdisciplinary perspective to the study of conflict, violence, war, and peace. Such an approach is essential in view of the highly complex, interconnected, interdependent world in which we live. This requires an understanding that allows people to respond creatively, rather than thoughtlessly, to conflict and violence at various levels.
Veena Howard, Philosophy, Coordinator
Andrew Fiala, Philosophy
Requirements for the Minor
A total of 21 units, which will include:
1. 15 units from the Areas of Study. It is strongly recommended that 3 units be taken from each of the five Areas of Study. However, four out of the five areas must be covered.
3. PAX 100. Peace and Conflict (3 units)
Provides an overview of causes and types of conflict, critical examination of issues related to war, peace, and justice.
4. The minor also requires a minimum 2.0 GPA and six upper-division units in residence.
5. Courses also can fulfill General Education requirements as appropriate.
Areas of Study
AREA I - Personal and Interpersonal Issues
AREA II - Community and Social Issues
AREA III - International and Global Issues
AREA IV - Conflict Management
AREA V - Education for Peace and Nonviolence
The department has a diverse and well-trained faculty with special interests ranging from logic and scientific method to existentialism and philosophy of religion. All members of the department share the conviction that the best way to teach philosophy is through an intense but sympathetic interchange between the teacher and the student.
For faculty phone numbers and e-mail, see the campus directory.
For more on the faculty, see the faculty pages.
The faculty pages are updated by the department or program.