Each program in the department has numerous desired outcomes. Students will be able to do the following:

Selected Educational Outcomes (Philosophy Track)

  1. Explain and analyze central issues, topics, and philosophers in the history of philosophy, from the ancient to the modern periods.
  2. Write and speak critically and logically, applying various theories to specific cases and examples.
  3. Explain their own value system, evaluating their values in the context of a diverse range of ideas that inform contemporary controversies and social conflict.
  4. Create independent philosophical research, synthesizing a variety of sources, including traditional primary philosophical texts and secondary source commentaries.
  5. Demonstrate a working familiarity with current research methods, citation styles, and presentation techniques.

Selected Educational Outcomes (Religious Studies Track)

  1. Explain and interpret the world’s religious traditions and their influence on values, norms, and public policies.
  2. Apply critical and analytical skills in analyzing multiple religious perspectives.
  3. Identify and evaluate their self-understanding in the context of diverse ideas that inform contemporary controversies and social conflict.
  4. Create independent research, synthesizing sources including sacred texts, religious autobiographies, and other secondary sources.
  5. Demonstrate a working familiarity with current research methods, citation styles, and presentation techniques.

Examples of Outcome Assessments (Philosophy Track and Religious Studies Track)

The department assesses the extent to which the program requirements create the desired outcomes by using a variety of techniques. Examples of these assessments (and related educational outcomes) include the following:

  1. The on-going evaluation of student examinations and research papers using rubrics, comparing quantitative data over time.
  2. Exit surveys to be administered to each student completing work for the major.
  3. Exit examinations administered during the senior Metaphilosophy/Religious Studies Capstone combined course.
  4. Surveys of alumni to assess the relevancy of the program to their current work and their suggestions for refinements.
  5. The use of university or external data that may become available to assess the quality of the program and the performance of graduates.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts Degree in Philosophy and Religious Studies

Core Curriculum 60
Core Curriculum Areas A-E (See VSU Core Curriculum) 42
Core Curriculum Areas F
Ethics and Contemporary Society
Introduction to Religion and Culture
Fundamentals of Philosophy
and World Religions
Foreign Language and Culture sequence
Senior College Curriculum 160
Select from the following Tracks:60
Religious Studies
Total hours required for the degree120

Philosophy Track 

Logic and Argumentation3
Principles of Logic and Argumentation
History of Philosophy6
History of Ancient Philosophy
History of Medieval Philosophy
History of Early Modern Philosophy
History of Late Modern Philosophy
Ethics and Health Care
Ethical Theory
Social and Political Philosophy
Ethics and Law
Ethics and Business
Ethics and Media
Ethics and Sport
Ethics and the Environment
Ethics and the Social Sciences
Ethics and Technology
Ethics and Public Policy
Ethics and Public Administration
Philosophy, Society, and Culture3
Philosophy of Religion
American Philosophy
Christian Ethics
Ecology and World Religions
Native American Thought and Cultures
Post-Colonization Issues in Indigenous Cultures
Native American Women
Mysticism and Social Justice
Philosophy, Religion and Film
Philosophical Themes in Film
Philosophy of Race
Philosophy of Happiness
Epistemology, Metaphysics, & Scientific Reasoning3
Philosophy of Science
Philosophy of Mind
Fate, Free Will, and Time
Senior-Level Curriculum3
Special Topics in Philosophy
Directed Study in Philosophy
Special Topics in Ethics
Directed Study in Ethics
Senior Capstone3
Upper Division REL courses 6
Minor and/or Elective Courses 30

Religious Studies Track 

Religious Traditions 6
Native American Thought
History of Religions and Sacred Texts 6
Inter-Religious Dialogue and Understanding
Philosophy of Religion
New Testament
Old Testament/Hebrew Bible
Religious Autobiography and Spiritual Transformation
Reading Sacred Texts: Hebrew Bible
Women and Gender in Early Christianity
The Archaeology of Ancient Israel
Varieties of Early Christianity
Women and Religion
Native American Women
Alternative Religions of the World
Religion, Ethics, and Society3
Religion, Violence, and Nonviolence
Philosophy of Sex
The Human Quest for Faith and Values
Ecology and World Religions
Post Colonization Issues in Indigenous Cultures
Mysticism and Social Justice
Philosophy, Religion and Film
Fate, Free Will, and Time
Senior Capstone3
Senior Capstone Course
Upper Division REL electives 3000-, 4000-level6
Upper Division PHIL Courses 3000-, 4000-level6
Minor and/or Elective Courses 30