Independent Study

Philosophy seniors

Senior Independent Study is a unique requirement at Wooster and a special opportunity for you to develop intellectually and philosophically. Your senior thesis can be on any philosophical topic that interests you. Some students choose topics that examine an aspect of a central question in philosophy. Other students write on problems and ideas that arise from a specific philosopher of the past. Still others work in areas where philosophy intersects with other disciplines, such as mathematics, art, and literature.

 Check out our 2020 Senior I.S. projects. 

Last year’s Senior IS titles included:

  • Examining Love Through a Philosophical Lens
  • Combining Phenomenology and Moral Particularism A Trilemma of Moral Truth
  • Saying "Yes," East and West: A Comparative Analysis of Meaning and Affirmation in Nietzsche and Mahayana Buddhism
  • “Big Time” College Sports: Amateurism, Exploitation, and Predicting Attitudes Regarding Student-Athlete Compensation
  • All My N*ggas is Casket Pretty: Projects of Sustainability for Black Bodies
  • A Cognitivist Conclusion in Metaethics:  The Value of a Realist Notion of Ethics in Fighting Injustice
  • Women Like Her Aren’t Supposed to Run for Office: A Philosophical Unpacking of Resistance in the American Political Sphere and a Rhetorical Analysis of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Tweets
  • On The Relative Long-Term Future Importance of Investments in Economic Growth and Global Catastrophic Risk Reduction
  • Just Cyber Warfare? An Exploration into the Ethics of International Cyber War
  • “To Thine Own Self Be True”: Deconstructing the Ideal of Authenticity
  • The Genuine Option: What Religious Studies is Missing Concerning William James
  • Defending Preservation of the Environment in While Considering Wild Animal Suffering

The Senior Independent Study thesis you create is your own. Your thesis should be an example of your best work. Your advisor’s role is to help you shape your project and to challenge you to perform your best, but in the end, the thesis is your responsibility. It is your responsibility to know the deadlines and the requirements related to your project. The standard pattern in this department is for each student to meet weekly with his or her advisor for at least an hour of discussion. Each advisor should periodically inform each student whether he or she is making adequate progress toward completion of the thesis. In almost every case that progress will be measured by the amount and quality of writing produced. Throughout the year there are specific departmental deadlines which are designed to help you make effective progress in completing your thesis.