Senior Comprehensive Exams

All philosophy majors are required to take a series of comprehensive exams in their senior year, and also to write a senior paper. They are also required to take an oral exam. The typical sequence would be as follows:

In the Fall semester of the junior or senior year, students will write a research paper that will be developed into their senior paper. Typically, this paper is developed in the Philosophical Writing course, and then rewritten in the Senior Seminar. The paper may also be one that was written in another class, or that was developed independently by the student, but it must be approved by the philosophy faculty and revised under their direction. The paper will then be defended before the philosophy faculty by the end of the senior year (which will be one component of the oral exam).

In the Spring semester of the senior year students will register for the Senior Seminar in Philosophy. In that seminar they will review for and take a series of written exams on the history of philosophy and basic philosophical terminology.

Students should consult with their mentor if they have any questions about this process.