Welcome to the Department of Philosophy

Philosophy is the systematic and critical inquiry into thinking and the nature of existence.

Philosophy badge As a discipline, philosophy is applied to a great variety of topics, such as the nature of knowledge, the mind, and truth, determining what is moral, investigating what makes something beautiful, and inquiring after the existence of God or Ultimate Reality.

As a practice, philosophy teaches analytical and critical thinking, develops oral and written communication skills, and contributes to interdisciplinary understanding. Philosophy attempts to answer perennial questions about values, human existence, and the nature of reality. Skills developed in this inquiry help philosophy students excel in careers in law, medicine, management, education, government, writing, computer science, psychology, sociology, and ministry among many others.

Upcoming Course Spotlight: Spring 2021

  1. PHIL 3110 - Women and Religion


    Examines the way(s) in which women have been, and continue to be viewed in various religions through comparing sacred and other texts with actual religious practices and beliefs. This course engenders an appreciation of the tension between the ideal expectations for and the real possibilities available to women in religious traditions.

    Hy-Flex: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:25-10:40am.

    Taught by Karen deVries   



  2. PHIL 4400 - Philosophy of Science


    A close examination of issues in the history, philosophy and sociology of science. Attention will be given to contemporary debates on such topics as the methodology of science, the growth of scientific knowledge, the logic of scientific discovery and the value-neutrality of science.

    In Person: Wednesdays, 1:40-4:20pm.

    Taught by Raphael Sassower




  3. PHIL 4350 - Analytic Philosophy: Frege to Davidson


    Analytic Philosophy is a term used to describe both a particular method and a style of philosophizing. This course examines that method and that style and shows the promise the former once held for settling traditional philosophical issues and problems and the continuing influence of the latter.

    Hy-Flex: Tuesdays, 1:40-4:20pm.

    Taught by Rex Welshon

  4. PHIL 3730 - Fiction and Imagination


    A study of the intersection of philosophy and literature, the benefits each derives from the other and of philosophical themes expressed in literary works and philosophical problems raised by literature.

    In Person: Tuesdays, 10:50am-1:30pm.

    Taught by Sonja Tanner


  5. PHIL 3330 - Emotion and Cognition


    Philosophy has tended to relegate emotions and emotional life to a minor role in the exposition of traditional philosophical questions or to eliminate emotions altogether from consideration. This course will rethink the role of emotions in philosophy.

    In-Person: Tuesdays, 1:40-4:20pm.

    Taught by Dorothea Olkowski


A Message From the Chair



Welcome to the UCCS Department of Philosophy!

The Philosophy Department was one of the original programs on the UCCS campus. In 1966, one year after the university received the Cragmor acreage, philosophy was established as part of the Boulder department’s offerings under the leadership of Resident Dean Richard Francis. From its origins as a branch department, the UCCS Philosophy Program soon became an independent department offering the major in Philosophy.

The Philosophy Department has an exceptionally broad range of courses. We see ourselves as unique in the western states because of this. The program is historically-based with detailed courses in four periods in the history of philosophy and full coverage of Eastern traditions.

We offer courses in all traditional areas, such as Metaphysics, Ethics, and Epistemology, and many courses on the cutting edge of their disciplines, such as Philosophy, Globalization, and Sustainability. We offer an undergraduate major, a minor and specialized tracks Religion, Classics, and Culture; Justice and Global Studies; Cognition, Science, Phenomenology, and Linguistics; Culture, Media, and the Arts (for more information, see our Programs page). The department requires of each of our majors the writing of an undergraduate thesis as the capstone of undergraduate experience.

Currently there are seven tenure-track faculty. Dorothea Olkowski (Professor) specializes in Continental Philosophy, Feminist Philosophy, and Philosophy of Science. Mary Ann Cutter (Professor) specializes in Ethics, Biomedical Ethics, Philosophy of Medicine, and Philosophy of Religion. Raphael Sassower (Professor) specializes in Postmodern Philosophy of Science, Social and Political Philosophy, and Philosophy of Art. Rex Welshon (Professor) specializes in Philosophy of Mind, Consciousness, Philosophy of Neuroscience, and Nietzsche. Sonja Tanner (Professor / Head of Department) specializes in Ancient Greek Philosophy, History of Philosophy, and Philosophy of Art. Jeff Scholes (Associate Professor) specializes in Philosophy of Religion, Philosophy of Sports, and Vocation Theory.  Jennifer Kling (Associate Professor) specializes in Philosophy of War, Social and Political Philosophy, Normative and Applied Ethics, Feminism.  Our full-time Instructors are Lorraine Marie Arangno, Patrick Yarnell, Erik Hanson, Allison Postell, Jennifer Jensen, Joseph Kuzma, and Colin Lewis. 

Feel free to contact me directly if you have any questions about the Department of Philosophy.


Professor Sonja Tanner, Ph.D. (Head of Department)