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  3. The Philosophy of Philosophy

The Philosophy of Philosophy (PHIL30007)

Undergraduate level 3Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelUndergraduate Level 3
Subject codePHIL30007
Semester 2
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject examines the nature of philosophy itself. Students will read what many great philosophers have said about the methods, aims, and ambitions of philosophy. And they will examine how these views are grounded in, or intertwined with commitments about metaphysics, epistemology, or ethics. The subject provides the opportunity to reflect on different strands in the philosophical tradition, which inspire conflicting projects in contemporary philosophy. It should also encourage students to reflect on the nature and methods of the philosophy they have studied to date. The subject is intended for students nearing completion of a philosophy major, but may also be taken by others.

Intended learning outcomes

Students who successfully complete this subject will:

  • possess a broad knowledge and understanding of the different methods, aims and ambitions of philosophy. They will be able to identify, understand and intergrate major disciplinary themes from among ethics, political philosophy, metaphysics, epistemology, and philosophy of mind over a wide range of historical periods and traditions;
  • engage critically with existing philosophical conversations and develop the capacity for critical and creative interventions in those discussions, using conceptual tools and approaches developed throughout the history of philosophy and in its different traditions;
  • discern the relevance of philosophical ideas in a wide variety of fields and contexts. This will include recognising and critiquing the epistemological, ontological, and ethical assumptions in scientific, moral, political, and cultural positions and arguments;
  • bring philosophical intelligence and expertise to bear in their studies in disciplines beyond philosophy, including the humanities, and the social and empirical sciences, and reflect on the import of other disciplines such as empirical psychology, theoretical physics or literary studies for philosophical thinking;
  • demonstrate a high-level of fluency in communication and collaboration skills, including oral and written presentation of arguments and effective work in small and large groups;
  • be prepared to engage with the possibility of radical critique of their own presuppositions and commitments.

Last updated: 14 August 2019