2022/23 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue
PHIL5860M Philosophy of the Social Sciences
30 creditsClass Size: 20
Module manager: Dr Victor Dura Vila
Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable
Year running 2022/23
This module is mutually exclusive with
|PHIL3865||Philosophy of the Social Sciences|
Module replacesHPSC5510 Realism and Representation in Science
This module is not approved as an Elective
Module summaryThe social sciences aim to understand various social phenomena involving the actions of individual human beings, the patterns of group behaviour, the nature of social institutions and the role of norms. What kind of understanding do the social sciences provide? How do they explain? Hoe do the social sciences differ from the natural sciences? What is the relationship between individuals and larger social structures? Do social structures exist over and above individuals? Is social science value-laden in a different way or to a different degree than natural science? This module looks at some of these issues in the philosophical of the social sciences, using a range of accessible examples.
ObjectivesOn successful completion of this module, students should have developed a critical understanding of the philosophical issues concerning the nature and status of the social sciences and the explanation they provide.
On successful completion of this module students will have knowledge of a range of issues in the philosophy of social sciences and ability to critically engage with those issues, at a level appropriate to a Masters' programme.
Ability to apply philosophical methods to specific science
The specific syllabus may vary from each to year, but topics will include a selection from the following:
- Are there laws in the social sciences?
- The nature of social scientific explanations
- Scientific modelling in the social sciences
- Causation and mechanisms on the social sciences
- The role of social values in science
- Philosophy of rational choice theory
- Scientific realism in the context of the social sciences
|Delivery type||Number||Length hours||Student hours|
|Private study hours||282.00|
|Total Contact hours||18.00|
|Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)||300.00|
Private studyStudents are required to prepare for each tutorial by completing a set reading and question-set, as well as researching recommended secondary source material.
Opportunities for Formative FeedbackThe module leader will comment and contribute, where relevant, on tutorial groups discussion throughout the module.
Comments on draft essay plans will be offered to students up to the final week of the module.
Monitoring of progress via one-to-one tutorials will be made available during module tutor's office hour.
Methods of assessment
|Assessment type||Notes||% of formal assessment|
|Essay||6000 words (end of module)||100.00|
|Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)||100.00|
Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated
Reading listThe reading list is available from the Library website
Last updated: 29/04/2022 15:26:27
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