PHIL 1102 - Mind and World

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2014

Being human is special. Humans are highly intelligent, language-using organisms, who are capable of building complex systems of knowledge, conscious of themselves and their world, and able to freely choose a path through life. So far as we know this combination of abilities is uniquely human. But each is somewhat puzzling. How can we be free if every event is determined by what comes before it? How can words and symbols, which are mere scribbles (or noises), have meanings? And how do organisms with bodies made of physical materials get to be conscious knowers? Philosophers have thought long and hard about these questions. Mind and World is an introduction to some of the answers they've discovered.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code PHIL 1102
    Course Mind and World
    Coordinating Unit Philosophy
    Term Semester 2
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Assessment 400-500 word short essay (20%); 1000-1250 word essay (40%); exam (40%)
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Jonathan Opie

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1. Introduce students to the methods of contemporary philosophy.
    2. Develop the ability to identify the structure of philosophical arguments.
    3. Present some classic philosophical problems and dilemmas.
    4. Understand some of the central problems in the theory of knowledge, the theory of representation, and the philosophy of mind.
    5. Have experience in analyzing and critiquing written arguments.
    6. Show improvement in problem solving and critical reasoning skills.
    7. Be able to discuss and debate philosophical issues in a group setting.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1, 3, 4
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 1, 2,
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 5, 6
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 7
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 6
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 6, 7
    A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 5, 6, 7
    An awareness of ethical, social and cultural issues within a global context and their importance in the exercise of professional skills and responsibilities. 6, 7
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    The Mind and World Reader will be available from the Image and Copy Centre, Level 1, Hughes Building from Week 1. This book contains all of the readings required for tutorials, and can also be used for essay preparation.
    Online Learning
    Lecture notes and a recording of the lectures will be made available on MyUni each week. Tutorial questions for the following week's tutorial will also be made be made available on MyUni.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Lectures. There are two lectures each week, which can be attended in person or viewed on MyUni.
    Tutorials. Tutorials are designed to help you understand the lecture material, but may touch on other topics. To prepare for tutorials, please answer the questions made available each week on MyUni.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    2 x 1 hour lecture per week
    1 hour tutorial per week
    3 hours revision per week
    3 hours tutorial preparation per week
    3 hours assessment work (essay and exam preparation)

    Total per week 12 hours
    Learning Activities Summary
    Introduction (1 Lecture)

    Topic 1: Do we have Free Will? (3 Lectures)
    The puzzle of free will. Compatibilism and its rivals.
    Freedom and responsibility.

    Topic 2: What is Knowledge? (6 Lectures)
    The puzzle of knowers and knowing. Classical and
    naturalized epistemology. Relativism versus objectivism.

    Topic 3: Where does Meaning come from? (3 Lectures)
    The puzzle of representation. Meaning and meaning bearers.
    Linguistic and pictorial meaning. Theories of meaning.

    Interlude (1 Lecture)

    Topic 4: What is a Mind? (10 Lectures)
    What is a mind and who has one? Marks of the mental:
    consciousness, intelligence & intentionality. The computer
    model of the mind. Classical metaphysics of mind.
    Specific Course Requirements
    Attendance at a minimum of seven out of ten tutorials is compulsory. You will incur a penalty of 3% per tutorial for any further absences, unless you can provide a medical certificate or counsellor’s letter. The penalty is deducted from your final course mark. The maximum possible penalty is 9% (attendance at five or fewer tutorials).
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Task Type Weight
    Essay 1 Summative 20%
    Essay 2 Summative 40%
    Exam Summative 40%
    Tutorials Formative Unweighted
    Assessment Detail
    Your assessment in Mind and World will involve two essays and an exam. The word limits below are lower and upper bounds, respectively.
    1. Essay 1 (400-500 words). You will choose one question based on material from Topic 1.
    2. Essay 2 (800-1000 words). You will choose one question based on material from Topic 2.
    3. Exam (2 hours). The exam will comprise eight questions, two based on material from Topic 3 and six based on material from Topic 4. You will not be permitted to bring notes or textbooks into the exam.
    Submit your essays by posting them in the essay slot outside the Humanities Office, Napier 722, by 12 pm on the submission date. Submission by email is not permitted, except under special circumstances. Make sure you keep a copy of each essay that you submit, either as a computer file or a photocopy. 

    Each essay must satisfy the following requirements:
    1. It must be submitted with a signed and completed cover sheet, available outside Napier 722.
    2. It must acknowledge  any dependence, either direct or indirect, on source material.
    3. It must include a reference list of all material cited in the essay.
    4. It must not lie outside the specified word limits.
    5. Written work which doesn’t conform to these requirements may be penalized.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

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    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

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  • Policies & Guidelines
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