The departmental senior exercise takes part in the context of a Senior Philosophy Conference held each year at the end of the Spring semester. During the conference each senior major will present a paper on some philosophical topic of his or her choice. The paper might be a chapter from a senior thesis, a revised version of a paper submitted for a course, or something composed especially for the conference. The conference will give each senior the opportunity not only to share his or her ideas with fellow students and faculty, but also to find out what other senior majors have been working on this year.
Participation in the senior exercise is required for graduation. Because we conceive of the conference as a chance for seniors to present their own work and to hear from their peers, we expect that all seniors will be in attendance for the full conference. Also, as a way of celebrating the accomplishments of the seniors and to provide a forum for continuing discussions, the conference will be followed by a dinner that will take place immediately following the conference at a local restaurant.
Each session will last approximately 40 minutes, with 25 minutes for the paper and 10-15 minutes for questions. Once the department chair has received all of the presentation titles, s/he will get back to you with a complete schedule of the day’s events.
Also, the department will be using the senior presentations as one element of the learning assessment program which every department at Trinity is now participating. Because the assessment by the department will be based on both the prepared text and the oral presentation, each senior must submit a printed copy of his or her presentation at least one day prior to the conference. The faculty will then meet to discuss the presentations to help us assess the efficacy of philosophical instruction in the department.