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Kris Phillips - Southern Utah University. Cedar City, UT, US

Kris Phillips Kris Phillips

Assistant Professor of Philosophy | Southern Utah University


Specializing in early modern philosophy, specifically the work of Rene Descartes


Dr. Kris Phillips is an assistant professor of philosophy at Southern Utah University whose primary research includes early modern philosophy, specifically the work of Rene Descartes. He is published in several philosophy journals and is author of a forthcoming article on the pedagogy of the philosophy of dance. He is co-editor of the book, “Arrested Development & Philosophy,” a philosophical analysis of the cult hit television show.

Before joining SUU in 2014, Phillips taught at Northern Michigan University. He is co-founder of two high-school summer programs for students interested in philosophy: the Iowa Lyceum and the Utah Lyceum. He is engaged in projects surrounding the philosophies of education, mind, dance, and popular culture.

Dr. Phillips earned his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Central Michigan University and a master's degree in philosophy from Western Michigan University. He went on to get a second master’s degree and Ph.D. in philosophy from University of Iowa. A long-time member of the American Philosophical Association, Dr. Phillips serves on the APA's pre-college instruction in philosophy committee, and the curriculum committee for the APA/PLATO's (Philosophical Learning and Teaching Organization) AP Philosophy Course.





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Major Decisions: Philosophy


Industry Expertise (2)

Education/Learning Research

Areas of Expertise (10)

Philosophy of Religion Epistemology Philosophy of Dance Philosophy of Education Metaphysics Philosophy Philosophy of Mind Individual Variation Logic History of Modern Philosophy

Accomplishments (3)

College of Humanities and Social Sciences Early Career Award (professional)

Awarded by Southern Utah University.

Most Valuable Professor (professional)

Awarded by Southern Utah University Athletics.

Council on Teaching Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award (professional)

Awarded by University of Iowa.

Education (4)

Central Michigan University: B.S., Philosophy

Western Michigan University: M.A., Philosophy

University of Iowa: M.A., Philosophy

University of Iowa: Ph.D., Philosophy

Affiliations (6)

  • Student Assessment Intervention Team
  • American Philosophical Association
  • APA Committee for Pre-College Instruction in Philosophy (APA CPIP)
  • Philosophical Learning And Teaching Organization (PLATO)
  • Phi Kappa Phi National Honors Society
  • Allies on Campus

Media Appearances (2)

WSW: Are Liberal Arts a Moral Obligation?

WMUK  online


"Kristopher Phillips says we have a moral obligation to study the liberal arts. The assistant professor of philosophy at Southern Utah University will make his case Thursday, March 16, at Western Michigan University..."

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Vigil Planned in Memory of Orlando Victims

The Spectrum News  online


Members of the Southern Utah University Allies on Campus are holding a candlelight vigil on Thursday to mourn the 49 people killed by a lone gunman. Kris Phillips, assistant professor of philosophy and co-chair of Allies on Campus, agreed that the Orlando tragedy has impacted far more than the LGBT community in every state.

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Courses (10)

PHIL 1000 Introduction to Philosophy

This course introduces some of the themes, works, figures, and topics in the Western philosophical tradition. It explores questions involving value, human nature, knowledge, and rationality.

PHIL 1250 Reasoning and Rational Decision Making

Students discuss and explore some of the methods and principles that distinguish logically good reasoning from bad. They learn how to use formal systems to recognize, construct, and evaluate every-day argumentation.

PHIL 3011 Philosophy of Religion

This course examines arguments for and against the existence of God. In doing so, students explore questions such as: what is the nature of God? Is divine foreknowledge consistent with human freedom? How do we evaluate testimony regarding religious matters? Do reason and logic matter when it comes to religion?

PHIL 3300 Theory of Knowledge

This course examines epistemology, accounts of knowledge. Topics include belief, opinion, justification, common sense, faith, skepticism, truth, and error.

PHIL 3400 Mind, Language & Reality

This course examines issues in metaphysics. Topics include causation, determinism, consciousness, artificial intelligence, language, and reality.

PHIL 4010 Senior Seminar

A capstone course for philosophy majors that surveys a central philosophical problem(s). Prerequisite: Successful completion of one course in each area of the major.

PHIL 4120 History of Modern Philosophy

Examines Modern Philosophy through the works of Bacon, Descartes, Kant, the empiricists, and the rationalists.

PHIL 4850 Philosophy of Mathematics in the 17 Century

This course is an independent study with a professor on an approved topic.

HONR 1040 Foundations of Honors

Students are introduced to and explore the fundamental skill-sets required to succeed as students at Southern Utah University and in the SUU Honors Program by developing an understanding of the complete student experience at college and the interdisciplinary nature of an Honors education. The class emphasizes seminar-style discussions and teamwork, develop students’ critical thinking and problem solving skills, and explore issues related to holistic student heath and well being.

HONR 2010/4010 Dialogue in the Disciplines

Students study a specific topic or theme. Communication and general analytical skills are stressed. Students are required to attend selected Convocation presentations.