PHIL 2111 - Pragmatism and Value Theory
North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2014
General Course Information
Course Code PHIL 2111 Course Pragmatism and Value Theory Coordinating Unit Philosophy Term Semester 2 Level Undergraduate Location/s North Terrace Campus Units 3 Contact 3 hours per week Prerequisites 12 units of level I HUMSS courses including minimum of 3 units of Level 1 PHIL courses Course Description Reasons for action can be represented in terms of principles and states of mind. The latter are conceived for the purposes of philosophical theory in terms of the elements of background experience, such as associations, intimations, feelings and emotions. However, the role of imaginative imagery as internalised through cultural artefacts such as popular media including television, video games and internet, has been underplayed. Some recent developments in value theory provide a framework for understanding the role of imagery in the ethical outlook that shapes our action and attitudes, and in turn, the assumptions embedded in our moral judgments. Understanding this aspect of moral judgment, is relevant to understanding the nature of moral disagreement.
The developments in recent philosophical theory of relevance to this topic can be brought under the banner of pragmatism. We will begin with an outline of the early American pragmatists, William James, Charles Peirce and John Dewey (which will involve considering their adoption of key aspects of the epistemological frameworks of Kant and Hegel) before considering the ethical theories of contemporary neo-pragmatists such as Jurgen Habermas, Hilary Putnam and Stanley Cavell. In essay writing, students will be able to use examples from popular media or the arts to demonstrate the arguments of Habermas, Putnam and Cavell concerning the grounds of normative justification.
Course Coordinator: Mr Greg O'Hair
The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.
Course Learning Outcomes1. Students will be introduced to a range of philosophical concepts
2. They will develop skills in argumentation and analysis in writing essays.
3. They will develop skills in public debating and discussion.
4. Students will develop skills in forming research questions and conducting research using a range of sources and technologies.
5. They will be able to apply philosophical concepts to understanding moral disagreement and the conditions for the possibility of community in a multi-cultural context.
6. They will have developed expertise in value theory to assist them in understanding complex cultural interactions.
7. They will have the appropriate concepts with which to consider the impact of popular media and
other cultural artefacts on moral outlook.
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 The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 2, 3 An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 4, 5 Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 3, 6 A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 4 A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 7 A commitment to the highest standards of professional endeavour and the ability to take a leadership role in the community. 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
Required ResourcesIntroductory and more advanced references will be provided.
Recommended ResourcesIntroductory and more advanced references will be provided.
Online LearningOnline references will be provided.
Learning & Teaching Activities
Learning & Teaching ModesLectures and seminars or tutorials
The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.Lectures and seminars/tutorials per week totalling 3 hours.
Reading per week (set & recommended texts): 3 hours
Preparation for lecture/seminar/tutorial per week: 3 hours
Assessment tasks preparation each week: 3 hours
Total per week = 12 hours
12 weeks of course: 12 x 12 hrs = 144 hours in total for semester
Learning Activities SummaryLectures and seminars/tutorials including online engagement
Small Group Discovery ExperienceSmall group activities included
The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:
- Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
- Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
- Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
- Assessment must maintain academic standards.
Assessment SummaryEssays and Coursework
Assessment Related RequirementsAttendance, participation, assessment tasks, coursework
Assessment DetailAttendance, participation, assessment tasks, coursework
SubmissionSee Philosophy Handbook
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.
The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.
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