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2024/25 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

PHIL3125 Continental Philosophy

20 creditsClass Size: 80

Module manager: Alba Cercas Curry

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2024/25

Pre-requisite qualifications

40 credits of L2 Philosophy modules

Module replaces

PRHS3100 Existentialism and Phenomenology

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This module is designed to give students an advanced introduction to key themes in continental philosophy (e.g., death, the body, freedom, the Other, nature) - and how it differs from approaches in analytic philosophy.


* To gain critical awareness of the importance of continental philosophy for the wider history of philosophy.
* To appreciate and comprehend aspects of style, method and content that are particular to the continental tradition, including the role of literature, theatre, film, and art in philosophical exposition.
* To assess the continued relevance of themes in continental philosophy for political, cultural, religious and ethical critique in contemporary society.
* To assess the relevance of key themes in continental philosophy for other branches of study in philosophy, such as ethics, aesthetics, metaphysics, philosophy of religion, political philosophy.

The module will be taught through interactive lectures and seminars. Lectures introduce central issues and arguments. In interactive seminars, students will explore and analyse specific texts, and are encouraged to critically reflect on and develop their own ideas and arguments about them.

Learning outcomes
On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

1. Articulate and critically analyse some of the main approaches and debates in Continental philosophy, including the main arguments for these ideas and approaches.

2. Explain the intellectual environment in which these approaches and debates developed.

3. Accurately describe and critically engage with the questions that were raised in these debates and why they are important

Skills Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of the module students will have demonstrated the following skills learning outcomes:

4. Communicate ideas and understanding clearly and concisely, using appropriate academic language (Academic and Work Ready skill)

5. Critically analyse source material and demonstrate independence of thought (Academic and Work Ready skill)

6. Search for appropriate material to support knowledge and analysis of topics (Academic, Work Ready, Digital and Sustainability skill)

7. Conform to standards of academic integrity including when and how to appropriately acknowledge someone else’s work (Academic and Work Ready skill)


This module will introduce several themes in continental philosophy. The syllabus will vary annually. Themes could include, for example, death, the body, freedom, the Other, and nature.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours179.00
Total Contact hours21.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Formative assessment in this module is designed to facilitate (i) differentiated instruction, (ii) active student reflection on skills development, and (iii) student choice. In addition to the formative feedback available to students in office hours and seminar-based activities, each student is invited to complete one piece of formative work which will receive written feedback. In this module, the student is given three options: essay plan; exposition of a philosophical argument; objection and reply.

By giving students a choice, this formative assessment takes account of variations in prior knowledge and skill development, and it enables the instructor to respond to students’ individual needs. However, it also builds students’ academic self-conception and encourages them to take ownership over their intellectual development. To do this, and to ensure that students get the formative feedback that they need, each student is required to select an option after writing a critical reflection on the skills that they judge they most need to work on. They are asked to read and reflect on (i) the feedback they received in L2 summative assessments, (ii) the PRHS marking criteria and (iii) the specific guidance provided on the summative assessment in this module. They then submit their chosen formative work accompanied by a short reflective log explaining the choice they have made. This exercise builds critical reflection into the module. It requires that the students critically engage with previous feedback, current expectations, and it asks them to play an active role in honing their knowledge and skill development.

This formatively assesses skills outcome 6.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay3000-word essay100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Resit will be ‘as original’ i.e. by 3000 word essay but students will have to choose a question different to the one they chose for their original essay.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 30/05/2024 15:28:19


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