Handbook

PHIL20001 Science, Reason and Reality

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Commencement Date & Location:
2014, Parkville
This subject commences in the following study period/s:
Semester 2 - Taught on campus.
Timetable can be viewed by searching for this subject at http://sws.unimelb.edu.au or by viewing the timetable here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 2x 1-hour lectures each week and 1x 1-hour tutorial (weeks 2-12
Total Time Commitment:

An average of 8.5 hours each week.

Prerequisites:

None.

Corequisites:

None.

Recommended Background Knowledge:

None

Non Allowed Subjects:

None

Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website: http://www.services.unimelb.edu.au/disability/

Coordinator

Assoc Prof Howard Sankey

Contact

Associate Professor Howard Sankey

chs@unimelb.edu.au

Subject Overview:

This subject addresses some of the central issues in the philosophy of science. It will raise questions such as: What is the difference between science and non-science? Is there a universal scientific method? Or do the methods employed by scientists vary historically? Is scientific theory change a rational process? Is science objective? Do scientific theories inform us of the truth about the world? Students who take this class will have knowledge of the major themes of recent and contemporary philosophical thinking about science. They will also have experience of the methods of critical analysis and argument employed in the philosophy of science and a background on which to base further study in the area.

Learning Outcomes:

Students who successfully complete this subject will:

  • have knowledge of the major ideas and theories of recent and contemporary philosophy of science.
  • have background in the philosophy of science on which to base further research and study in the area.
  • have experience with methods of critical analysis and argument employed in the philosophy of science, leading to improved general reasoning and analytical skills.
Assessment:

A 1500-word essay, 30% (due mid-semester) and a 2500-word essay, 70% (due at the end of semester).

This subject has a minimum hurdle requirement of 75% tutorial attendance. Regular participation in tutorials is required. Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day, after 5 working days late assessment will not be marked. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Prescribed Texts:
  • What is This Thing Called Science? (A Chalmers)
  • Philosophy of Science: The Central Issues (M Curd & J A Cover)

Recommended Texts:
  • Representing and Intervening (I Hacking)
Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

Students who successfully complete this subject will:

  • have experience of thinking systematically about difficult intellectual problems of an abstract nature.
  • have practice conducting research, speaking articulately, writing clearly and reading with attention to detail.
Links to further information: http://www.philosophy.unimelb.edu.au/
Notes:

This subject is available for 2nd year science credit for students enrolled in the BSc (pre-2008 degree only), or a combined BSc course (except for the BA/BSc).

Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: History and Philosophy of Science
History and Philosophy of Science
History and Philosophy of Science
History and Philosophy of Science Major
Knowledge and Learning
Philosophy
Philosophy
Philosophy
Philosophy Major
Science credit subjects* for pre-2008 BSc, BASc and combined degree science courses

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