Assistant Professor


  • Website:

    Personal Website
  • Role:

  • Position:

    • Assistant Professor
  • Concentration:

    • philosophy of science
  • Department:

    • Philosophy
  • Education:

    • B.A. Simpson College
    • Ph.D. University of Missouri


Collin Rice's primary areas of research are the philosophy of science (especially the philosophy of biology), epistemology, and the philosophy of mind (especially cognitive science and concepts). He also has interests in philosophy of physics, logic (probability and symbolic), ethics, and modern philosophy. His current research focuses on the epistemological issues surrounding scientific explanation and understanding, the use of highly idealized and abstract models in science, and the positive roles idealizations play in scientific theorizing. Collin holds a B.A. from Simpson College where he majored in Physics and Philosophy and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Missouri. Before coming to CSU, he spent a year as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Pittsburgh's Center for Philosophy of Science, was an Assistant Professor at Lycoming College from 2012-2015, and an Associate Professor at Bryn Mawr College from 2016-2022.



Leveraging Distortions: Explanation, Idealization, and Universality in Science (MIT Press, 2021)

Articles and Chapters:

  1. Rice, C. (2021). “Understanding Realism”, Synthese, 198, 4097-4121.
  2. Rice, C. (2020). “Universality and Modeling Limiting Behaviors”, Philosophy of Science, 87, 829-840.
  3. Rice C. and Rohwer Y. (2020). “How to Reconcile a Unified Account of Explanation with Explanatory Diversity”, Foundations of Science, DOI 10.1007/s10699-019-09647-y.
  4. Rice, C. (2019). “Universality and the Problem of Inconsistent Models” In Understanding Perspectivism: Scientific Challenges and Methodological Prospects, (ed. M. Massimi and C. D. McCoy), Routledge. **
  5. Rice, C., Rohwer, Y. and Ariew, A. (2019). “Explanatory Schema and the Process of Model Building”, Synthese, 196, 4735-4757.
  6. Rice, C. (2019). “Models Don’t Decompose that Way: A Holistic View of Idealized Models”, The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 70, 179-208.
  7. Rice, C. (2018). “Idealized Models, Holistic Distortions and Universality”, Synthese, 195(6), 2795-2819.
  8. Rice, C., Ariew, A. and Rohwer, Y. (2017). “Galton, Reversion and the Quincunx: The Rise of Statistical Explanation”, Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, 66, 63-72.
  9. Rice, C. (2016). “Factive Scientific Understanding Without Accurate Representation”, Biology and Philosophy,31(1), 81-102.
  10. Rice, C. and Rohwer, Y. (2016). “How Are Models and Explanations Related?”, Erkenntnis, 81(5), 1127-1148.
  11. Rice, C. (2016). “Concepts as Pluralistic Hybrids”, Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 92(3), 597-619.
  12. Rice, C., Ariew, A. and Rohwer, Y. (2015). “Autonomous Statistical Explanations and Natural Selection”, The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 66(3), 635-658.
  13. Rice, C. (2015). “Moving Beyond Causes: Optimality Models and Scientific Explanation”, Noûs, 49(3), 589-615.
  14. Batterman, R. and Rice C. (2014). “Minimal Model Explanations”, Philosophy of Science, 81, 349-376.
  15. Rice, C. and Rohwer, Y. (2013). “Hypothetical Pattern Idealization and Explanatory Models”, Philosophy of Science, 80, 334-355.
  16. Rice, C. (2013). “Concept Empiricism, Content, and Compositionality”, Philosophical Studies, 162(3), 567-583.
  17. Rice, C. (2012). “Optimality Explanations: A Plea for an Alternative Approach”, Biology and Philosophy, 27(5), 685-703.
  18. Rice, C. (2011). “Massive Modularity, Content-integration, and Language”, Philosophy of Science, 78(5), 800-812.
  19. Rice, C and Smart, J. (2011). “Interdisciplinary Modeling: A Case Study of Evolutionary Economics”, Biology and Philosophy, 26, 655-675.


  • Phil 120: History and Philosophy of Scientific Thought

  • Phil 325: Philosophy of Natural Science