• Contact Info

Shear, Ted Lecturer

Positions

Teaching

courses taught

  • PHIL 1400 - Philosophy and the Sciences
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2020
    Considers philosophical topics and concepts related to the natural sciences, such as the following: science and pseudo-science; scientific method; the nature of explanation, theory, confirmation, and falsification; the effect of science on basic concepts like mind, freedom, time, and causality; ethics of experimentation; and the relation of science to society.
  • PHIL 1440 - Critical Thinking
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2020 / Fall 2020 / Spring 2021 / Fall 2021
    Develops students' skills in evaluating arguments and other aspects of critical thinking, focusing on the ways people reason and attempt to justify their beliefs. Activities may include modeling arguments, detecting common fallacies, examining the use (and misuse) of scientific evidence, and learning the basics of symbolic logic. Formerly titled Introductory Logic.
  • PHIL 2160 - Ethics and Information Technology
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2021
    Examines contemporary ethical issues concerning the use, misuse, and development of information technologies, with particular focus on the consequences such changes may have on the lives of individuals and on the shape of societies. Topics may include hacking and cyber crime; artificial intelligence; robotics and automation technologies, such as drones and self-driving cars; mass surveillance; use of personal information by corporate, law enforcement, and media interests; as well as gaming and virtual reality.
  • PHIL 2170 - Ethics and Economics
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2020 / Spring 2021
    Examines a variety of perspectives on problems at the intersection of ethics and economics, using both empirical data and moral reasoning to evaluate arguments concerning topics such as: government regulation of private industry, protectionist economic policies, fair work compensation, retirement benefits, and access to health care.
  • PHIL 2440 - Symbolic Logic
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2021
    Introduces students to sentential logic, the logic of quantification and some of the basic concepts and results of metalogic (interpretations, validity and soundness).
  • PHIL 4400 - Philosophy of Science
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2021
    Advances students' knowledge of topics in philosophy of science and develops students' ability to think and write clearly about science. Topics may include scientific methodology; distinguishing science from pseudoscience; characterizing experimental and historical sciences; interpretations of special and general relativity; interpretations of quantum mechanics; the nature of biological species; approaches to defining life; criteria for identifying alien life; artificial intelligence; neuroscience and consciousness; fundamental physical properties and laws of nature; chance and probability; and causation. Same as PHIL 5400. Recommended prerequisite: 12 hours philosophy course work including PHIL 2440.

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