This course introduces students to some of the central methods and problems of metaphysics and epistemology — that is, the theory of the fundamental nature of reality and our grounds for forming beliefs about it. We generally take ourselves to know many things. I know that I am currently in Pennsylvania, that I work at Bucknell University, that I have a dog named Otter, and so on. But it doesn't seem that I can decisively rule out the possibility that I am dreaming — and if I can't rule it out, how can I be correctly said to know any of those things? Perhaps they are just figments of my dreaming imagination! This is the Dreaming Argument for radical skepticism about the external world. It challenges our basic conception of knowledge as justified true belief by raising the possibility that our justification can always be defeated. Must we accept skepticism? Can any of our beliefs be justified? Can we ever be certain about the nature of reality? Speaking of reality, what are its basic components? What are material objects? How do they persist through change? Is reality entirely material or might there be immaterial or abstract objects? Where do minds fit in? Is time an objective feature of the world? Such questions have puzzled philosophers for millennia. By studying them, you will get a taste for some major fields of philosophy but will also learn how to practice philosophical methods. In the process, you will gain skill in attentive reading, logical analysis, careful writing, and critical discussion/argument. In short, you will become a better thinker, learning about philosophy by doing some philosophy.