Undergraduate Philosophy Courses

Students in the M.T.S. and M.Div. programs are expected to have 12 credits in philosophy from their previous university work. These should include PHIL200 Introduction to Philosophy (or equivalent). The philosophy requirements may be taken concurrently with the degree, but do not count as elective courses towards the M.T.S. and M.Div. degree. Students on the B.Th. program must take PHIL 200 and one other philosophy elective. Students preparing for ordination should note that there are additional philosophy requirements for ordination beyond those required for the degree.

Reading courses in philosophy may be taken by students who are not registered in a program at Newman Theological College. The policy that students must have finished at least one half of their program to take reading courses does not apply to courses in philosophy. 

Note: Courses not suitable for this format are PHIL 201 Logic and all language courses.

PHIL 200 Introduction to Philosophy

3 Credits
A general introduction to the major areas of philosophy and philosophical method.  Issues that may be addressed include knowledge, truth, beauty, God’s existence, evil, free-will, happiness, morality, political theory.

Recommended first philosophy course. Required for B.Th.

PHIL 201 Logic

3 Credits
An introduction to reasoning and argumentation. The course will discuss the analysis and structure of arguments in daily life, the media, philosophy and theology. Problems of clarity and meaning in the analysis of information, rules for definitions, the formation of propositions, the construction and evaluation of arguments will be covered. A basic introduction to the syllogism and/or propositional logic will be included.

PHIL 238  Aesthetics

3 Credits
Various theories of aesthetics in philosophy and theology. Beauty as a transcendental. Aesthetics and the arts.

PHIL 239  Ethics

3 Credits
Introduction to traditional and contemporary problems and methods of philosophical ethics or moral philosophy. The impact of ethics on theological and religious teachings and concerns and vice versa.

PHIL 240  Philosophy of Person

3 Credits
Philosophical inquiry into human nature and personhood in relation to nature and being in general. The historical development of the concept of person in philosophy and anthropology from past to present, especially in view of theological understandings.

PHIL 241  Philosophy of Nature

3 Credits
Philosophical inquiry into various aspects of nature and the universe, including issues arising from changing views of science and cosmology. The theological importance of various views of nature and God in historical and contemporary times.

PHIL 242  Religious Issues in Philosophy

3 Credits
Focus on religious questions encountered from past to present in philosophy, especially as treated in philosophy of religion and in philosophical theology.  Possible issues include: faith and reason, existence/attributes of God, religious experience, miracles, religious language, life after death, God and evil, religious diversity.

PHIL 243 Metaphysics

3 Credits
A philosophical study of being in its various dimensions. Issues such as substance and attributes, transcendental, being and essence, analogy, and universals will be addressed in light of classical and contemporary approaches. Special attention will be given to the functions of metaphysics within theology.

PHIL 244  Epistemology

3 Credits
An inquiry into knowledge, meaning and truth. A consideration of the validity and roles of sense experience and conceptual knowledge in areas such as common sense, the sciences, metaphysics, and religion. The course will examine the strengths and weaknesses of realism, empiricism, idealism, phenomenology, and contemporary theories of knowledge.

PHIL 245 Ancient Philosophy

3 Credits
A study of the major early Greek philosophers that have been influential in theology. Special attention will be given to Plato and Aristotle.

PHIL 246  Medieval Philosophy

3 Credits 
The major early and late medieval philosophers and their schools of thought that have been influential in theology, for example: Augustine, Anselm, Thomas Aquinas, Bonaventure, John Duns Scotus, Nicholas of Cusa, William Ockham.

PHIL 247  Modern Philosophy  

3 Credits
The major modern philosophers and their schools of thought that have been influential in theology, for example: Descartes, Hume, Kant and Hegel.

PHIL 248 Contemporary Philosophy

3 Credits
An overview of major 20th century philosophers, issues and movements that have been influential in theology and philosophy of religion, for example: Existentialism, Pragmatism, Hermeneutics, Phenomenology, Personalism, Process Thought, Analytic Philosophy, Philosophies of Language and Symbol.

PHIL 249  Special Questions in Philosophy

3 Credits
Varied course description.

PHIL 250  Contemporary Catholic Philosophy

3 Credits
A study of the major Catholic and non-Catholic philosophers that have influenced the Second Vatican Council and the contemporary Church.  Figures studied may include: Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, Gabriel Marcel, Maurice Blondel, Joseph Marechal, Dietrich Von Hildebrand, Edith Stein, Jacques Maritain, Bernard Lonergan.  Recent philosophers who have been of significance to the contemporary church may include Alasdair MacIntyre, Charles Taylor, Germain Grisez, Jean Luc Marion, etc...