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Philosophy Department

Program Description

Philosophy faculty teach courses in each of the major subject areas of philosophy: ethics, metaphysics, and epistemology. The Philosophy Program offers core courses for the interdisciplinary Minor in Bioethics, as well as, a Minor in Philosophy.

Philosophy Minor Requirements

Students who wish to earn the Philosophy Minor must

  • complete 18 semester hours in Philosophy with a “C” grade or higher.
  • In addition, he or she must complete both PHIL 0201 and 0202. In addition, he or she must meet the “Depth Requirement”
  • of 9 semester credit hours in Upper Division Courses (300-level courses). 

Bioethics Minor Requirements

An Interdisciplinary Program

Bioethics Center

Since its inception in 1999, the Tuskegee University National Center for Bioethics in Research and Health Care has been committed to stimulating interest in and maintaining a national focus on the moral issues underlying biomedical research and medical treatment of African Americans and other underserved populations in this country. Designed as a program in cooperation with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Center for Bioethics provides national leadership in the bioethics community through ongoing education, training, research, scholarship, and publications. The Center for Bioethics seeks to increase the number of African Americans and other minorities trained and working in bioethics.

Bioethics weaves throughout the work of nurses, doctors, public health workers, social workers, lawyers, veterinarians, psychologists, community outreach persons, sociologists, engineers, biomedical resarchers, environmental specialists, and public policymakers. Technological advances raise many bioethics issues. Examples are stem cell research and genetic engineering. Bioethics is concerned with protecting vulnerable populations from exploitation and insuring their fair share of healthcare and public health opportunities, as well as just participation in research.

In human endeavors there is often potential to benefit or harm, to be just (fair) or unjust, to respect or disrespect peoples’ dignity and freedom of choice, to treat with care and empathy or disinterest and insensitivity, to include or exclude, and to be racist or antiracist. In all cases, bioethics works to understand and promote ethical practices.

Careers and Professions

Bioethics studies are beneficial for all careers. Healthcare professionals (human and animal) encounter bioethics issues throughout their work, as do psychologists, sociologists, and biomedical researchers. Many areas in the law, business, and public policy involve bioethics. A background in bioethics is helpful in applying to health professional schools.

Bioethics Minor

All Tuskegee students are eligible to pursue the minor. The Bioethics Minor includes courses from the following disciplines: Philosophy (PHIL), Political Science (POLS), Sociology (SOCI), Social Work (SOWK), Nutritional Science (INSC), Physics (PHYS), Nursing (NURS), Health Science (IHSC), and Occupational Therapy (IOTH). Note: All courses are three credits except IOTH 0421.

Basic Requirements

  • Eighteen credit hours, at least “C” grade in each course
  • Six credit hours in core courses
  • PHIL 205 or PHIL 347

Core Courses

  • PHIL 203 Ethics and Values
  • PHIL 204 Ethics and Values: Applied Concentration
  • PHIL 205 Introduction to Bioethics
  • PHIL 347 Medical Ethics

Other Qualifying Courses

From the College of Arts and Sciences

  • PHIL 0201         Introduction to Philosophy
  • PHIL 0238         Argumentation and Discourses
  • PHIL 0310         Issues in the Sciences and Humanities
  • PHIL 0325         Philosophy of Science
  • PHIL 0341         Social and Political Philosophy
  • PHIL 0342         Philosophy of Law
  • PHIL 0348         Business Ethics
  • PHIL 0350         Theories of Nature, the Cosmos, and the Environment
  • PHIL 0351         Philosophy of Mind
  • PHIL 0357         Africana Philosophy
  • PHYS  0512      History of Science
  • POLS 0208       Ethics and Politics
  • SOCI 0402        Social Mental Health
  • SOCI 0443        Minority and Ethnic Group Relations
  • SOCI 0470        Sociology of Health Care
  • SOCI 0541        Socio-Cultural Problems of the South
  • SOWK 0235      Human Behavior and the Social Environment

From the College of Agriculture, Environment and Nutrition Sciences

  • INSC     0580     International Nutrition     Problems and Policies

From the School of Nursing and Allied Health

  • NURS   0303     Nursing and the Community III
  • IHSC     0409     Psycho-Social Aspects of Rehabilitation
  • IOTH     0421     Organization, Administration, and Ethics in Occupational Therapy

Other Student Opportunities in Bioethics

Student Council -- Students discuss cases of bioethics interest (such as whether to allow stem-cell research), develop presentations, attend conferences, and compete in the Ethics Bowl of the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics.

Reading Group -- Faculty, students, staff, and community members read bioethics articles about important issues and meet to discuss them.

Lecture Series -- Public lectures and panels address important issues in bioethics.

Films -- Participants view and discuss films of bioethical importance.

Visiting Scholars -- Outside bioethics scholars work with students, faculty, and community members.

Orientation -- In orientation sessions for first-year and transfer students, cases of bioethics importance, methods of case analysis, and bioethics principles are discussed.

Program Faculty:

Dr. Archibald Laud-Hammond
Associate Professor of Philosophy
Office Location: 44-114 John A. Kenney Hall
Office Phone: 334-727-8211

Dr. Gregory Gray
Dean of the Chapel and Professor of Religion and Society
Office Location: Chapel
Office Phone: 334-727-8702

Dr. Brett Coppenger
Assistant Professor of Philosophy
Office Location: 70-404 John A. Kenney Hall
Office Phone: 334-727-8752