College of Letters & Sciences

Philosophy & Religious Studies

Contact Information

David Simmons
Department Chair & Associate Professor
Phone: 262-472-1232
Location: Laurentide Hall 4207
Tracy Hawkins
LIBST Coordinator & Master Advisor & Assistant Professor 
Phone: 262-472-1975
Location: Laurentide Hall 4223
Mary Alkons
Academic Department Associate
Phone: 262-472-4775
Location: Laurentide Hall 4205

Philosophy & Religious Studies


The aim of the Philosophy & Religious Studies Department at UW-Whitewater is to foster critical thinking and appreciation in the areas of reasoning, knowledge, reality, meaning, gender and race issues, ethics, history of religions, hermeneutics, religious rituals, and sacred stories. 

We currently have ten faculty members, each of whom brings unique teaching, experience, and research in the attainment of our aim and goal. Our particular research emphases are in German philosophy, feminist philosophy, philosophy of race, philosophy of science, epistemology, ethics, social philosophy, aesthetics, biblical interpretation, classical Hinduism, Buddhism, and religion in the human sciences.

Areas of Study

Our department offers a minor in Philosophy, a minor in World Religions, and a major and minor in Liberal Studies. Our philosophy courses familiarize students with basic issues, problems, and methods of philosophy, as well as with the history of philosophy. Our religious studies courses explore ideas and issues relating to the world’s major religions, focusing on the intellectual, historical, cultural, and personal dimensions of religion in human life. Our liberal studies courses cover a wide range of disciplines, including the arts, humanities, sciences and social sciences and enable students to develop breadth of vision and a fundamental understanding of society and values from interdisciplinary perspectives. All of these courses provide students with a heightened capacity for critical thinking and a deeper understanding of the human condition.

Student Experience

Students in the department may join two unique organization's: philosophy minors lead the Philosophy Club, where any and all questions of a philosophical nature are asked, and world religions minors lead the Religious Studies Student Organization (RSSO), where they enrich their understanding of religion. Department faculty have also sponsored independent undergraduate research.


Possible Careers

Studies in philosophy, religion, and liberal studies prepare students for careers in law, business, administration, government, international business, international relations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), social work, and health professions serving diverse communities.

Course Offerings in Fall 2018

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