Choosing the Right Humanities and Philosophy Classes


Are you ready to take a philosophy or humanities class?

All of our classes require college-level reading and writing skills, so we recommend that students place into English 101 before registering for our classes.  However, there are some students who have not placed into English 101 do well in philosophy courses because they have had philosophy courses in their high school in another country.  It should also be noted that in most philosophy courses, a large amount of reading is not assigned, and the assigned reading is carefully reviewed in class.  In many ways, philosophy classes actively teach a higher level of critical reading and writing.

How can you find out more about particular classes?

Consult our department's current schedule(s) on this site. A schedule offers more detailed information about our classes than is found on Oakton's general site. In particular, you can click on instructor's names, read brief biographies, and get instructor's emails. Most instructors will be happy to send you copies of past syllabi and to answer other questions.

Are there pre-requisites?

None of our classes have prerequisites. It is not the case that 200-level classes are more difficult than 100-level classes. You will do best in a class that interests you. Many students believe that they must take HUM 120 before they can take HUM 121. This isn't true!

There are no majors in Oakton's transfer classes. What can help you link your classes together, help you meet students with similar interests, and also improve your transcript?

We highly recommend that you consider completing one of Oakton's concentrations: Global Studies, Women's and Gender Studies, Peace and Justice Studies, Great Books, Environmental Studies, or Honors. There are humanities and philosophy classes that give you credit for each of these concentrations. When you complete one of these concentrations, it appears on your transcript.

Should you take an online class?

Our online classes all require consistent participation several times a week. Students move through the class together rather than at a self-chosen pace. The students who do best in online classes are students who are highly motivated and who have unusual levels of self-discipline.

Is it possible to earn both global studies credit and humanities credit with one class?

Yes! You can do this by enrolling in World Music, Asian Humanities, World Mythologies, Global Film, World Religions, or Asian Philosophy.

Which classes satisfy the general humanities requirement?

HUM 120, 121, 122, 127, 140, 142, 210, and 220 as well as PHL 105, 106, 205, 215, 230, 231, 240, and 245.

Which classes satisfy the humanities fine arts requirement?

Humanities 120, 121, 122, 123, 125, 131, 142, 160, 161, 165, 220, 242, and 260 all satisfy this requirement.

What if your main interest is in science and math? Are there appropriate classes to take?

You may want to take philosophy classes - definitely including Logic. For the fine arts humanities requirement, you may want to take classes such as HUM 120 or HUM 121 that look a little at the history of science and math. For example, do you know who developed the quadratic equation? (You may want to find out what instructors have this particular interest.)

What if you are going into health care?

It is important that you take Ethics or Medical Ethics.  This is a requirement for many health care programs.

What if I am completely undecided?

It might be good to consider taking Introduction to Philosophy or Ethics where many questions concerning what is a meaningful life are addressed.  In terms of the fine arts requirement, there has to be something that you would find enjoyable.  Perhaps you like film. You will like it even more after you take a film class that gives you a deeper understanding of the meaning of films and what goes into their production.