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Tully Borland

  • Ph.D., Purdue University, Philosophy, 2008 / Dissertation: “The Ethical Theory and Voluntarism of John Duns Scotus” Jeffrey Brower, Director
  • M.A.,  Marquette University, Social and Applied Philosophy, 2002
  • B.A.,  Mount Vernon Nazarene University, Philosophy/Humanities, Summa Cum Laude, 2000

Areas of Specialization

  • Medieval Philosophy
  • Ethics

Areas of Competence

  • Ancient Philosophy
  • Epistemology & Metaphysics
  • Modern Philosophy
  • Philosophy of Religion


  • Bilsland Dissertation Fellowship, Fall 2007- Spring 2008\Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award, Department of Philosophy, Purdue University, Fall 2006- Spring 2007
  • Summer Purdue Research Fellowships, 2005, 2006, 2007
  • 2002 Charles M. Ross Trust Fund Award, Marquette University
  • 2000 Outstanding Senior Award, Philosophy, Mount Vernon Nazarene University


“Leibniz and the Imitation of God: A Criticism of Voluntarism” (co-authored with Dr. Allan Hillman), Philosophy & Theology 23(1); 2011, pp. 3-27.

Collaborative Book Review of Terence Irwin's 3 Vol. Series The Develoment of Ethics: A Historical and Critical Study (Oxford, 2007-2009) in The Philosophical Forum: A Quarterly, VOl. XLII, No. 3, Fall 2011 (Chapters 25-26 on John Duns Scotus reviewed, pp. 287-8).

“Omniscience and Divine Foreknowledge” in The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Summer 2006 Edition), Bradley Dowden and James Feiser (eds.),


“Ontological Voluntarism and Human Nature,” (with Allan Hillman) Alabama Philosophical Society, September 2011, Pensacola, FL

“Leibniz Contra Voluntarism: Moral Psychology and the Problem of Imitating God,” (with Allan Hillman) Midsouth Philosophy Conference, March 2011, Memphis, TN

“Scotus and Aquinas on the Dispensations of the Moral Law,” Evangelical Philosophical Society, Annual Meeting, November 2010, Atlanta, GA

“Leibniz’s Criticism of Voluntarism: The Case Against Hobbes,” (with Allan Hillman) Alabama Philosophical Society, Annual Conference, September 2010, Pensacola, FL

“Leibniz’s Concept of Goodness,” (with Allan Hillman) Midsouth Philosophy Conference, Annual Meeting, March 2010, Memphis, TN

“Duns Scotus on Freedom,” Evangelical Philosophical Society, National Meeting, November 2009, New Orleans, LA

“Duns Scotus’s View of the Nature of Justice," Evangelical Philosophical Society, Midwest Region, April 2008, Ashland, OH.

“In Defense of Rationalism against Skepticism,” Indiana Philosophical Association Conference, November 2005, Franklin, IN.

“The Coherence of Rationalism,” Annual Conference hosted by the Marquette Philosophy Graduate Student Association (paper submissions open to professors & grads), October 2005, Milwaukee, WI.

“Comments on Celello on Moral Desert,” Indiana Philosophical Association Conference, April 2005, Indianapolis, IN.

“Scotus’ Dualism and Free Agency,” Purdue University Graduate Student Philosophy Quorum, February 2005, West Lafayette, IN.

“Problems with Kant’s Animal Ethics,” Annual Wesleyan Philosophical Society Conference, April 2004, Rochester, NY.

Courses (Purdue)

  • Critical Thinking
  • Introduction to Ethics
  • Introduction to Philosophy
  • Philosophy of Religion
  • Religions of the West


Courses (OBU)

  • Christian Apologetics
  • Contemporary Philosophy
  • Epistemology/Metaphysics
  • Interpreting the Bible
  • Introduction to Philosophy
  • Introduction to Liberal Arts
  • Intellectual Traditions
  • Issues in Science and Religion
  • Modern Philosophy
  • Philosophy of Religion


I’m a husband, dad, and philosopher. I have a wonderful wife and four fantastic kids, the oldest are girls and the youngest are boys. They are a lot of fun. I like to play about any sport and am an avid Steelers and Ohio State Buckeye fan. (How do I justify this? I grew up in Ohio but also close to Pittsburgh).

Before college, I was in the 82nd Airborne Division. I had my wisdom teeth pulled somewhere around 1995. I’ve only had one cavity in my life even though I rarely floss and didn’t go to the dentist for seven years during graduate school. If I had many lives, in 3 of them I'd be an architect, a helicopter pilot, and a general housing contractor (but not all at once unless in those lives I lived to be about 300 years old).

I think my favorite smell is wood burning in the fall. I like wood. It's a really nice material. Speaking of wood, one of my favorite childhood memories is the memory of going out early on Saturday mornings (before football began) and cutting and hauling firewood with my dad, uncle, and brothers. My least favorite type of lift: bent over rows. One of my most annoying habits: pulling my beard (I know, but I just don't care. Twisting beard hair is a wonderful feeling. Deal with it).

My favorite sound: my kids laughing when they’re being tickled.

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