Reading and Writing Philosophy
- Start date
- End date
- Year of study
- Year 1
- Term 1
- Module code
- FHEQ Level
- Department of Religions and Philosophies
Reading and Writing Philosophy’ provides first-year students with the necessary skills to evaluate philosophical texts and effectively present philosophical analysis.
Working with brief, self-contained arguments extracted from philosophical texts from a variety of traditions, students will learn strategies for isolating the main idea of an argument (its conclusion) and for clearly demonstrating an argument’s structure. Through weekly formative and practical exercises within a seminar environment, students will become familiar with formalising arguments before moving on to problems of interpretation and evaluation.
Students will then be challenged to develop coherent philosophical arguments of their own and to articulate them effectively in a range of written forms: from traditional essays to academic blogs and public engagement pieces essay format. Students will also learn about good citation practices and various research skills.
Objectives and learning outcomes
- Identify arguments in short but complex passages of philosophical writing from a number of Global North and Global South writers
- Analyse the structure of arguments as relations between premises and conclusion.
- Read blocs of text as arguments
- Explain what a literature review involves
- Use established citation practices in writing
- Communicate philosophical ideas in a range of written formats
Scope and syllabus
Week 1: Intro and module overview
Week 2: Basic Unit of Currency – Arguments
Week 3: Reading Blocs of Text as Arguments
Week 4: Reconstructing Arguments
Week 5: Reviewing: From Individual Texts to Literatures
Week 6: Reading Week
Week 7: Essay Writing and Referencing
Week 8: Writing Reflectively
Week 9: Conceptual Mind-mapping
Week 10: Academic blogging / Writing Public-facing Articles
Week 11: Workshop
Method of assessment
- One short essay of 1,000 words OR video essay or multimedia presentation (5 minutes, 5 pages/slides) - (30%)
- One portfolio (including longer essay) of 2,000 words (70%)
Bowell, T. and Kemp, G. 2019. Critical Thinking: A Concise Guide (5th ed.) London: Routledge.
Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules.