PHIL 3018 - Existentialism
North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2021
General Course Information
Course Code PHIL 3018 Course Existentialism Coordinating Unit Philosophy Term Semester 2 Level Undergraduate Location/s North Terrace Campus Units 3 Contact Up to 3 hours per week Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N Prerequisites At least 6 units of Level II undergraduate study Incompatible PHIL 2034 Course Description The most distinctive focus of existentialism is the nature and meaning of human existence. Existentialist philosophers raise anew the question of the meaning of existence because they find traditional answers to it inadequate. Any conception of the nature and meaning of human existence has implications for questions such as the nature of the self, the relation with others, and ethical ideals such as altruism and self-creation. The course will focus on two prominent existentialist philosophers: Friedrich Nietzsche and Jean-Paul Sartre. Both philosophers attempt to address the question of the meaning of life. The central concern of Nietzsche's philosophy is nihilism and the conditions of its overcoming. The main problem addressed by Sartre's philosophy is the absurdity of existence and its practical implications.
Course Coordinator: Dr Jordi Fernandez
The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.
Course Learning OutcomesThis course aims to
1. Introduce students to the views of some representative philosophers and writers in the existentialist tradition: Friedrich Nietzsche, Soren Kierkegaard and Jean-Paul Sartre, most prominently.
2. Develop an understanding of several philosophical themes in the existentialist tradition, such as the foundation of moral values, the ideals of authenticity and self-creation, and relations to others like altruism and love.
After successfully completing this course, students should be able to
3. Display an awareness of the main views of some representative existentialist philosophers and writers.
4. Analyse texts from existentialist philosophers and extract the relevant arguments from them.
5. Evaluate an argument by an existentialist philosopher (as valid, or sound).
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) Deep discipline knowledge
- informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
- acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
- accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
1 Critical thinking and problem solving
- steeped in research methods and rigor
- based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
- demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
4-5 Teamwork and communication skills
- developed from, with, and via the SGDE
- honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
- encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
1-5 Career and leadership readiness
- technology savvy
- professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
- forward thinking and well informed
- tested and validated by work based experiences
1-5 Intercultural and ethical competency
- adept at operating in other cultures
- comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
- able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
- demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
1-3 Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
- a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
- open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
- able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
- Marino, Gordon (2004) Basic Writings of Existentialism (New York: Random House).
- All lectures will be pre-recorded and released through MyUni.
- One of the available tutorial groups, or workshops, will be online through Zoom.
Learning & Teaching Activities
Learning & Teaching ModesThis course is taught in lectures+tutorial format:
- Lectures are pre-recorded and will be made available through MyUni.
- You will have the option of attending either a face-to-face tutorial, or an on-line tutorial through Zoom.
Tutorials run in weeks 2-11. At the end of each week, questions for discussion will be posted in MyUni to be discussed in the following week’s tutorial. You should come to the tutorials with your answers to these questions ready, having thought about the relevant topics. This exercise will give you an opportunity to assess your progress in the course regularly.
The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.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 2 hours
3 hours revision per week (working through text, relevant online material, seminar notes) 3 hours
3 hours lecture preparation per week 3 hours
3 hours assessment work (completion of written tasks, essay reading and preparation, essay writing) 3 hours
Total per week 12 hours
This is a guide to the average number of hours per week students should spend on this course; in short, students should spend a total of (12 weeks x 12 hours per week) = 144 hours over the course of the semester.
Learning Activities SummaryThe course will cover (some of) the views of:
- Soren Kierkegaard
- Arthur Schopenhauer
- Friedrich Nietzsche
- Karl Jaspers
- Jean-Paul Sartre
- Fyodor Dostoevsky
- Albert Camus
Specific Course RequirementsNone
Small Group Discovery ExperienceIn the tutorials, we will have ‘small group discovery’ activities: The lecturer will provide a text. The class will be broken into groups and each group will be asked to form some views about a number of questions regarding the text. Then, all groups will share their views about those questions.
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 SummarySummative assessment:
- Essay 1 (2,000 words), worth 50% of the grade. Relevant learning outcome: 1-5.
- Essay 2 (2,500 words), worth 50% of the grade. Relevant learning outcome: 1-5.
Questions for discussion during tutorials. Relevant learning outcome: 1-5.
Assessment Related Requirements
Submission of two essays is a course requirement. The first one should be about 2,000 words long. The second one should be about 2,500 words long. You are strongly urged to attend the course tutorials, though attendance is not compulsory.
Essay 1 is a 2000 word essay. Students will choose from a number of set topics based on material from weeks 1-6 of the course. Topics will be released in MyUni three weeks before the due date.
Essay 2 is a 2500 word essay. Students will choose from a number of set topics based on material from weeks 7-12 of the course. Topics will be released in MyUni three weeks before the due date.
Submissiona) Submitting your essays
All essays must be submitted electronically through MyUni. Please do not submit a hard copy of your essay. In this course, we will only accept electronic submission of essays through MyUni. Please remember that it is your responsibility to submit your essays correctly.
• The first page of your essay must include your name and student ID number.
• At the end of the submission process, please print (or take a picture of) the screen telling you that your file has been submitted. In the event of system failure, we will accept that as proof that you did submit your essay.
• You are required to keep both a hard copy and an electronic copy of each of your essays.
• Comments to Essay 1 will be returned electronically, approximately two weeks after the due date. If you require comments to your second essay back, please let the lecturer know by noon of the due date for Essay 2.
b) Overdue work
If your essay is submitted after 12pm of the due date without an extension, then your work will be considered late/overdue. Please note the following regarding late/overdue work:
(i) Late essays will be penalized at the rate of 2 marks of the percentage mark achieved for that
assessment component for each day that the work is overdue.
(ii) Essays submitted more than 7 days late without an extension will not be marked.
For the purposes of both (i) and (ii), the number of days that the assessment task is overdue will be counted by using noon as the cut-off point (since all pieces of assessment are due at noon).
Faculty of Arts policy states that students are eligible for extensions only on the basis of medical, compassionate or extenuating circumstances.
E-mail communication with your course coordinator, lecturer, tutor or marker does not constitute a request for an extension. In order to be granted an extension, you must submit an "Application for Assessment Extension" (available at the Faculty of Arts website) together with all relevant documentation, to the School of Humanities Office, before the due date.
No other grounds for extension will be permitted. Extension requests made on other grounds, or made on/after the due date, will be declined. In particular, note that pressure of other work or sporting commitments are not accepted as grounds for extension.
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.https://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/700?dsn=policy.document;field=data;id=5082;m=view
Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.https://access.adelaide.edu.au/sa/login.asp
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.
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 (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) 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.https://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/?dsn=policy.document;field=data;id=161;m=view
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