• General Expectations


    Students and faculty each bear a responsibility for maintaining an appropriate learning environment, which includes treating everyone in our class community with courtesy and sensitivity. Please note that we have a “no devices” policy in this course (see below).


    Class rosters are provided to the instructor with the student’s legal name. We will gladly honor your request to address you by an alternate name or gender pronoun. Please advise us of this preference early in the semester so that we may make appropriate changes to our records.


    For more information on the standards of accountability for students and faculty at Wesleyan University, see the Standards of Conduct outlined by the Office of Student Affairs and the 15 regulations that comprise the Code of Non-Academic Conduct.


  • Class Sessions


    Some of the class sessions in this course are plenary sessions (mostly on Mondays), which will typically be in a lecture format and where we will all meet together; other sessions are breakouts (on Wednesdays) where you will meet in your section groups. Both these sessions will be led by one of your professors. In addition, a third type of session (held every Friday) will be a peer-led dialogue session led by two of our student Dialogue Facilitators, where you will meet in your section groups.


    All plenary sessions of the course meet in Shanklin Hall, room 107 (SHAN107). Section groups (for breakout and dialogue sessions) meet in the following rooms:


    Section 1: Russell House, Millet Room (RUSSMILLET)

    Section 2: Russell House, Millet Room (RUSSMILLET)

    Section 3: Fisk Hall, room 314 (FISK314)

    Section 4: Fisk Hall, room 314 (FISK314)

    Section 5: Shanklin Hall, room 107 (SHAN107)

    Section 6: Russell House, Millet Room (RUSSMILLET)


  • “No Devices” Policy


    To maintain a classroom environment conducive to learning and discussion, we ask you to cultivate a habit of active listening and attention in every class session of this course. On some occasions during plenary sessions, we will ask you to make use of an electronic device to complete a poll or online activity; on all other occasions during plenary sessions, the use of electronic devices is not permitted. This includes laptops, smartphones, tablets, etc. Please disable all phone and messaging apps prior to the commencement of every class session.


    Note-taking by hand has been shown to have significant benefits over digital note-taking:


    A Learning Secret: Don’t Take Notes with a Laptop,” Scientific American (June 2014)

    Attention, Students: Put Your Laptops Away,” NPR (April 2016)

    Digital Notes vs Paper Notes: Benefits of Taking Notes by HandResearch.com (April 2021)


  • Participation


    Students are expected to attend all plenary, breakout, and dialogue sessions, and to be ready to participate, particularly in the breakout and dialogue sessions. Your professors reserve the right to “cold call” people who have not raised their hands. Students will occasionally need to have a connected device (phone, tablet, or laptop) for some plenary sessions that can send text messages for in-class polls. Please be in touch with your professors if this presents a hardship.


This course is graded credit – unsatisfactory (Cr-U), which means that to earn credit in the class, you must complete the course assignments to a satisfactory level. If you cannot complete an assignment by the deadline, please let the instructors know ahead of time, and we can discuss accommodations. Due dates are listed on the Assignments page as well as on the Course Calendar.

More specifically, in order to achieve a satisfactory grade, you must:

  • Attend and participate in all class sessions
  • Receive a “credit” on 2/3rds (or more) of the Perusall readings
  • Complete the introductory essay in argument analysis
  • Complete the two essays in comparative philosophical analysis
  • Complete the final essay
  • Complete all philosophical exercises and journal entries
If you run into difficulties, please be in touch with one of the instructors as soon as possible.

COVID-19 Code of Conduct

To protect your health and safety, the health and safety of instructors and staff, and the health and safety of your peers, all students must understand and adhere to Wesleyan’s COVID-19 Code of Conduct. Students are encouraged to review the code of conduct regularly to stay up to date on the current code. The course instructors reserve the right to refuse to allow any student into the classroom who does not adhere to this code of conduct.

Time Commitment

While the exact time commitment for each class will vary individually and over the course of the semester, we recommend that you budget approximately three out-of-class hours for every class hour to complete the reading, assignments, and exercises. We have designed the class so that it should be feasible to satisfactorily complete the requirements with no more than twelve hours per week of time commitment. If you are spending more time than this on a regular basis we encourage you to check in with us.

Accommodation Statement

Wesleyan University is committed to ensuring that all qualified students with disabilities are afforded an equal opportunity to participate in, and benefit from, its programs and services. To receive accommodations, a student must have a disability as defined by the ADA. Since accommodations may require early planning and generally are not provided retroactively, please contact Accessibility Services as soon as possible.

If you have a disability, or think that you might have a disability, please contact Accessibility Services in order to arrange an appointment to discuss your needs and the process for requesting accommodations. Accessibility Services is located in North College, rooms 021/218, or can be reached by email (accessibility@wesleyan.edu) or phone (860-685-2332).

Religious Observances

Faculty make every effort to deal reasonably and fairly with all students who, because of religious obligations, have conflicts with scheduled exams, assignments, or required assignments/attendance. If this applies to you, please speak with us directly as soon as possible at the beginning of the term.

Discrimination and Harassment

Wesleyan University is committed to maintaining a positive learning, working, and living environment. Wesleyan will not tolerate acts of discrimination or harassment based upon Protected Classes or related retaliation against or by any employee or student. For purposes of this Wesleyan policy, “Protected Classes” refers to race, color, national origin, sex, pregnancy, age, disability, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, veteran status, political affiliation or political philosophy. Individuals who believe they have been discriminated against should contact the Office for Equity and Inclusion at 860-685-4771.

Honor Code

All students of Wesleyan University are responsible for knowing and adhering to the Honor Code of this institution. Violations of this policy may include: cheating, plagiarism, aid of academic dishonesty, fabrication, lying, bribery, and threatening behavior. All incidents of academic misconduct shall be reported to the Honor Code Council at the Office of Student Affairs. Students who are found to be in violation of the academic integrity policy will be subject to both academic sanctions from the faculty member and non-academic sanctions (including but not limited to university probation, suspension, or expulsion). The Office of Student Affairs has more information.