Daniel M. Mittag

Daniel Mittag, assistant professor of philosophy, Albion College


Assistant Professor of Philosophy

B.A., 1995, Drake University; M.A., 1998, Texas A&M University; M.A., 2003, Ph.D., 2009, University of Rochester.

E-mail:
Office: Vulgamore Hall, Room 208
Phone: 517/629-0239

Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Daniel Mittag has teaching and research interests primarily in epistemology and philosophy of mind and also in philosophy of language. He is a member of the American Philosophical Association (APA).

Publications and Presentations

He has published articles on evidentialism, and causal and doxastic theories in journals such as the Canadian Journal of Philosophy.

He has also presented his research findings at several national conferences such as the American Philosophical Association Eastern Division Meeting and the Eastern Pennsylvania Philosophical Association Meeting.

Courses Taught

PHIL 101 Introduction to Philosophy

(1 unit)
Humanities Core Credit
Textual Analysis

Description:
In this course we will survey several fundamental philosophical questions. We will begin with a brief introduction to basic philosophical concepts and the structure of arguments. We will then examine important questions and survey historical and contemporary responses by philosophers to these questions. Some questions to be discussed are: What can I know? Does God exist? Are my actions free? What makes an action morally right or wrong? This course will develop your analytic skills and improve your ability to think and write clearly. It will also allow you to appreciate important historical and contemporary philosophical texts and form your own responses to the fundamental questions mentioned above.

PHIL 107 Logic and Critical Reasoning

(1 unit)
Humanities Core Credit
Modeling Mode of Analysis

Description:
Logic and Critical Reasoning is an introduction to argumentation, logical analysis, and the principles of good reasoning. This course is designed to help you express your own arguments clearly and develop skill in identifying, interpreting, and evaluating arguments. Students who successfully complete the course will be adept at distinguishing rhetoric and emotional speech from rational argumentation, distinguishing successful from unsuccessful arguments, and diagnosing mistakes in reasoning. As such, this course is ideal for those interested in developing their critical reasoning abilities.

PHIL 289 (Selected Topic) Philosophy of Mind

(1 unit)
Humanities Core Credit

Description:
This course will focus on prominent competing theories in the philosophy of mind. The central topic is the relation of the mind to the physical world, but we also will consider issues regarding artificial intelligence, mental content, and folk psychology. Among the questions we will consider are the following. If we were to create a complete physical duplicate of you, would we also thereby have created a complete mental duplicate of you? Can we adequately explain what it is like to experience pain or smell sulfur within a physicalist framework? Is genuine artificial intelligence possible in principle, and if so, how might we determine that we had succeeded in creating it? Some of our mental states (beliefs and desires, e.g.) have content. That is to say they are about ways the world might be, but what ultimately determines the particular contents that they have? Was Putnam right when he said, "Meaning just ain't in the head"?

PHIL 307 Symbolic Logic

(1 unit)
Humanities Core Credit
Modeling & Analysis

Description:
This is a course focusing on topics in modern deductive logic. Our focus will be on propositional logic, predicate logic, and the logic of necessity and possibility. We will develop an artificial language for representing the logical features of natural language sentences, and we will develop rigorous techniques for demonstrating the validity and invalidity of arguments. Successful students will be able to use these techniques to model and analyze texts in every discipline.

PHIL 315 Knowledge, Truth, and Reason

(formerly Epistemology)

(1 unit)
Humanities Core Credit
Historical & Cultural Analysis

Description:
This is an introduction to the theory of knowledge. We will critically examine competing theories of knowledge, the nature of truth, and the justification of belief. Topics addressed include skepticism, contextualism, and "interest-relative" theories of knowledge.