University of Dubuque


Philosophy and Religion Faculty

Alan Crandall
Alan Crandall
Adjunct Faculty, CORE, Music, Religion

Roger Ebertz
Roger Ebertz
Biography - Click Here

Ph.D. Philosophy, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE, 1991.
M.A. Philosophy, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE, 1988.
M.Div. Theology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, CA, 1981
B.A. Philosophy, Carleton College, Northfield, MN, 1975.

Areas of Specialization
Epistemology, Ethical Theory

Additional Areas of Teaching Competence
History of Philosophy, Philosophy of Religion, Introduction to Philosophy
Introductory Logic,  Applied Ethics, Environmental Philosophy

Current Research and Writing Areas
Applied Ethics, Moral Epistemology, Critical Thinking, Religion and Higher Education

Graduate Coursework
Graduate Philosophy Courses:
Theory of Knowledge
Justification, Reliability & Rationality
Philosophy of Mind
Formal Logic
Philosophy of Language
Advanced Logic/Theory of Meaning
A Priori Knowledge
Philosophy of Mathematics
Moral Epistemology
Recent Kantian Ethics
Recent Contractarian Ethics
Survey of Greek Philosophy
Aristotle's Epistemology
Hellenistic Philosophy
Descartes and Spinoza
Kant's Ethics
Kant's Metaphysics and Epistemology
Themes in the Philosophy of Religion

Graduate Theology Courses:
Philosophy of Religion
Social Ethics
Reading in Kierkegaard
Systematic Theology
Church History
New Testament Studies
Old Testament Studies
New Testament Greek
Old Testament Hebrew

Teaching Experience
Professor (1998-present), Associate Professor (1995 to 1998), Assistant Professor (1992-1995), University of Dubuque, Dubuque, IA.

Visiting Assistant Professor (1990-1992), West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV.

Lecturer (1988-1990), College of Saint Mary (Lincoln program), Omaha, NE.

Instructor (1989-1990), University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE.

Instructor (Fall Semester, 1987), Northwestern College, Orange City, IA.

Teaching Assistant (1984-1985 and 1986-1987, 1988, 1989), University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE.

Summary of Courses Taught
Lower Level Undergraduate Courses:
The Art of Reasoning and Decision Making
Elementary Logic
Introduction to Philosophy (Historical)
Philosophical Questions (Topical Introduction)
Introduction to Religions and Worldviews
Ethics and Contemporary Issues
Environmental Perspectives
Business Ethics
New Student Seminar
Upper Level Undergraduate Courses: 
Ethical Theory
History of Ethics
Social and Political Philosophy
Ancient Philosophy
Ancient and Medieval Philosophy
Modern and Contemporary Philosophy
Philosophy of Religion
African and African-American Philosophy
Seminar on Religion and Higher Education
Dissertation Abstract
The Search for Coherence Between Beliefs:
A Study on the Relationship Between Coherence and Justifion

Dissertation Supervisor: Professor Robert Audi

This study investigates the relation between coherence and epistemic justification.  Part One is primarily critical.  A preliminary chapter outlines three reasons coherentist theories of justification are attractive and a basic anticoherentist argument which concludes that pure coherentist theories of justification cannot account for justification. Subsequent chapters flesh out this argument through a critical evaluation of the coherentist theories of Keith Lehrer and Laurence BonJour.    Given this understanding of justification, a theory of epistemic responsibility is developed according to which coherentist considerations and methods play important roles as a believer seeks to be epistemically responsible.  The resulting theory of justification and responsible belief shares many of the features which make coherentist theories attractive, yet provides a more adequate account of justifying reasons.


Book Review of Faith and Knowledge: Mainline Protestantism and American Higher Education, by Douglas Sloan, in Teachers College Record, Volume 98, Number 1, Fall 1996.

"""""">""Socratic Teaching and the Search for Coherence,"" in Knowledge, Teaching and Wisdom, edited by Keith Lehrer, B. Jeannie Lum, Beverly A. Slichta, and Nicholas D. Smith, Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, 1996.

""Is Reflective Equilibrium a Coherentist Model?""  Canadian Journal of Philosophy, Volume 23, Number 2,  June 1993.

Professional Paper Presentations

The Vocation of Teaching: Themes and Models from the Presbyterian Tradition, with Peggy Cowan and Mary Shields, to the Consultation on the Vocation of the Presbyterian Teacher, August 10-13, 2000, Louisville, KY.

Toward a Theocentric Approach to Environmental Value,""  to a joint session of the Midwest Meeting of the Society of Christian Philosophers and the Dubuque Area Theological Forum, March 8, 1996, Dubuque, IA.

Why I Find Coherentism Unsatisfying"" to the Summer Institute on Knowledge, Teaching and Wisdom sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities, July 29, 1993, Berkeley, CA.

Varieties of Epistemic Responsibility"" at the spring meeting of the West Virginia Philosophical Society, March 27-28, 1992, Morgantown, West Virginia, and at the Midwest Meeting of the Society of Christian Philosophers, October 30-31, 1992, St. Paul, MN.

Is Reflective Equilibrium a Coherentist Model?"" at the Eastern Division Meeting of the American Philosophical Society, December 27-30, 1990, Boston MA.

Religious Experience and Foundational Beliefs"" at the Midwestern Regional Meeting of the Society of Christian Philosophers, October 13-15, 1988, St. Paul, MN.

Professional Conference and Seminar Participation

Steering Committee Member and Participant, Consultation on the Vocation of the Presbyterian Teacher, August 10-13, 2000, Louisville, KY.

Associate Director, Rhodes Consultation on the Future of the Church-Related College, 1999-2001, Midwest Discussion Group.

Participant, Rhodes Consultation on the Future of the Church-Related College, 1998-1999, Upper Midwest Discussion Group.

Participant, Summer Institute on Knowledge, Teaching and Wisdom, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities, June 23-July 30, 1993, Berkeley, CA.  Institute Directors: Keith Lehrer and Nicholas Smith.

Participant, Wheaton College Summer Seminar, July 11-15, 1989, Wheaton, IL.  Topic: Epistemic Warrant.  Seminar Leader: Alvin Plantinga.

Participant, Summer Seminar on Science and Christianity, sponsored by the Institute for Advanced Christian Studies, August 11-16, 1987, Madison, WI.  Seminary Leaders: David C. Lindberg, Keith Yandell, and Keith J. Cooper.

Unpublished Manuscripts (Available upon request)

Toward a Theocentric Approach to Environmental Value

The University of Dubuque: Our Tradition, Our Heritage, Our Future

Administrative Experience

Chair,  Department of Philosophy and Religion, University of Dubuque (1992 to present).  Responsibilities as chair of a department with one full-time faculty member and several adjuncts include curriculum design, assessment, course scheduling,  budgeting, multicultural course development, adjunct faculty development.

Project Director, ""Exploring Our Presbyterian Connection,"" a grant-supported project exploring the nature and meaning of Church-related higher education  (1996 to present).   Responsibilities include grant-writing, budgeting, organizing forums and discussions, leading faculty colloquia, teaching a seminar on Church-Related Higher Education.

Faculty Advisor (1992-present).  Serve as advisor to philosophy and religion majors (1992 to present), to pre-seminary students (1992 to present), to Native-American Students (1993-present), and to first-year students (1995-present).

Chair, Undergraduate Faculty Assembly (1994-1996,1999-2000).  Responsibilities included moderating faculty meetings and Educational Policy Council meetings, communicating with faculty, representing faculty on committees, serving as liaison to administration, overseeing faculty actions.

Task Force Member Tri-College Steering Committee (1995-1996).  This task force was appointed by the Presidents of the University of Dubuque, Clarke College, and Loras College to produce an evaluative report on the cooperative programs between the three institutions.

Faculty Committee Member.  University Planning, Advancement and Finance Committee, Admissions Committee, Academic Standing Committee, Library Committee.

Project Director, The Future of the Church-Connection at the University of Dubuque (1997-1999) A discussion group consisting of junior faculty members concerning the meaning and future of the University's connection to the Presbyterian Church.  This position also involved participation in regional and national meetings of the Rhodes Consultation on the Future of Church-Related Colleges, funded by the Lilly Foundation.

Faculty Representative to the Board, 1997 to present.  Represent the faculty of the School of Liberal Arts to the Board of Trustees.

Professional Memberships

American Philosophical Association,  Society of Christian Philosophers

Philosophy and Religion Department Head and Professor

PhD, MA, University of Nebraska
MDiv, Fuller Theological Seminary
BA, Carleton College
Office Phone: (563) 589-3669
Fax: (563) 589-3416
Office Location: 323 Severance Hall

Paul Jensen
Paul Jensen
Teaching Specialist Faculty, Philosophy and Religion and Director of Honors Program
Ph.D, University of Virginia
JD, University of Iowa
M.Div, Th.M, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
BA, North Park College
Office Phone: (563) 589-3796
Fax: (563) 589-3416
Office Location: 322 Severance Hall

May Burt Persaud
May Burt Persaud
Biography - Click Here

The daughter of a Presbyterian pastor, born in New Jersey, I grew up in Kansas, attended college at Grove City College, Grove City PA, as a Presbyterian National Scholar (1978), studied st St. Mary's College, St. Andrews University in St. Andrews, Scotland under a Rotary District Scholarship and finished graduate studies at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary in 1980. I married Winston D. Persaud, a Lutheran pastor from Guyana, South America and worked with him from 1980-1984 in the Lutheran Church in Guyana. In 1984, we returned to Dubuque, as my husband was called to teach Systematic Theology at Wartburg Seminary. We have two sons: Winston Jr, who is studying at Harvard, and Alexander, who works in Princeton NJ. Since 1986, I have been the Instructor of Biblical Languages at Wartburg Seminary, Dubuque IA, teaching Greek and Hebrew. I have also served as the Dean of Wartburg's Summer Greek Program many times. I have also been involved in teaching Bible in the Youth and Family Certification School for the past 15 years, as well as TEEM most recently. In the past twenty years, I have also taught Greek and Hebrew at various points at the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary.

Adjunct Seminary and Philosophy/Religion Faculty
MAR, University of Dubuque Theological Seminary
BA, Grove City College
Office Phone: (563) 589-3114
Fax: (563) 589-3110
Office Location: Severance Hall

Dan D. Rusmisel
Dan D. Rusmisel
Adjunct Philosophy/Religion Faculty

MDiv, Bethany Theological Seminary
Office Phone: (563) 589-3265
Fax: (563) 589-3416
Office Location: 324 Severance Hall

Evan J. Stark
Evan J. Stark
Adjunct Faculty - Religion
MDiv, University of Dubuque
BA, Central College