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Major (2017)

Information on this page, including unit offerings, is from the 2017 academic year.

Philosophy (BA)

  • B1316; B1316ABACHELOR OF ARTS

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Title Philosophy (BA)
Course Code B1316; B1316A
Study Level Bachelor (Undergraduate)
School School of Arts
Academic Contacts

Academic Chair: Dr Anne Schwenkenbecher | Email: A.Schwenkenbecher@murdoch.edu.au | Tel: 9360 6328

Qualification Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Philosophy
Duration 3 years full-time or part-time equivalent
Availability Murdoch campus (internal)
Murdoch campus (external)
Description Philosophy is the oldest academic discipline and the source from which the natural and human sciences have grown. The love of wisdom and the pursuit of truth are the greatest strength and the highest achievement of the human spirit. The study of philosophy does not always offer answers, but instead teaches us how to ask good questions; without a good question one does not know what counts as a good answer, or where to look for a good answer. This kind of study develops our critical and rational faculties, instils a positive sense of impartiality and fairness in considering the views of others, and fosters a cautious, reflective attitude toward those things whose comprehension may exceed our current opinions and beliefs.
In the Bachelor of Arts you will develop a broad understanding of your field and proficiency in producing written and oral arguments and creative artefacts in response to social, human and natural phenomena. You will also develop a critical appreciation of the perspectives of others. As an Arts graduate you will be able to think critically and creatively, apply knowledge and information, and communicate effectively. These are professional skills which are critical across a range of industries. You will also be able to pursue further study in the fields of social research, the humanities and/or the creative arts.
Admission Requirements: Onshore course offerings As per normal undergraduate admission requirements.

Equivalent of an Academic IELTS overall score of 6.0 with no band less than 6.0.
Special Requirements There may be a reduction in choice of units if completing this course in the external mode.
Major Learning Outcomes KNOWLEDGE
Students graduating with a Major in Philosophy will acquire:
* Research skills - the ability to draw on research undertaken in philosophy and other disciplines where relevant to a philosophical debate
* Historical understanding - an appreciation for the historical development of a philosophical debate and the ability to interpret texts drawn from the history of philosophy
* Clear communication - the ability to clearly articulate the central issues in a debate and to clearly communicate one's response
* Analysis - the ability to identify the assumptions or presuppositions underlying an argument or position; the ability to analyse arguments and evaluate them for validity and soundness, that is, to distinguish good arguments from flawed arguments and to detect instances of invalid reasoning
* Argument - the ability to construct rationally persuasive arguments for or against specific philosophical claims, to distinguish relevant from irrelevant considerations and to make creative use of examples in support of an argument
* Ethical Issues - sensitivity to ethical issues and the ability to engage in moral discourse
* Key terms and concepts - familiarity with philosophical terminology and theories.

SKILLS
Students graduating with a Major in Philosophy will have the skills to:
* follow complex arguments for and against a philosophical claim in both written format and oral presentations
* present clearly and concisely arguments in a philosophical debate
* analyse and evaluate arguments utilising imaginatively constructed or discovered examples and the methods of informal and formal reasoning
* construct cogent arguments for a particular position.

APPLICATION
Students graduating with a Major in Philosophy will have the knowledge and skills to:
* Identify and reflect on the knowledge and skills developed in their study of philosophy
* Apply and translate argumentative skills into practical skills
* Apply the analytical skills to writing, analysis and critical thinking
* Apply the general skills for thinking about problems and tasks, to frame and evaluate solutions
* Appreciate the value of different perspectives on life, society and knowledge
* Apply the logic skills to assess larger societal questions, like globalization and technology.
Course Learning Outcomes KNOWLEDGE
CLO1 - Graduates of the Murdoch University Bachelor of Arts demonstrate a broad and coherent understanding of
a) The theoretical perspectives and methods of enquiry of a discipline
b) The diversity of social, human and natural phenomena and the multiple perspectives (including inter-disciplinary perspectives) which can be brought to bear in social and creative enquiry
c) Global perspectives including an awareness of and respect for the historical, social, biological, cultural, and economic interdependence of global life

SKILLS
CLO 2 - Graduates of the Murdoch University Bachelor of Arts are effective communicators who demonstrate
a) proficiency in producing written arguments and/or creative artefacts consistent with the norms and standards of a discipline
b) capacity for persuasive oral communication appropriate to a range of audiences
CLO3 - Graduates of the Bachelor of Arts gather, synthesise and critically evaluate ideas and information from a range of sources demonstrating
a) analytical, creative and conceptual thinking
b) a variety of methods for research and practice appropriate to the discipline

APPLICATION
CLO 4 - Graduates of the Bachelor of Arts demonstrate confidence and competence in applying knowledge and skills to practice through
a) a capacity for self-directed independent enquiry
b) critical self-reflection
c) creative problem solving
d) a global perspective incorporating an appreciation of cultural and disciplinary differences
CLO 5 - Graduates of the Bachelor of Arts have well developed interpersonal and collaborative skills including the demonstrated capacity to
a) give and receive critical feedback
b) work effectively within team environments
c) respect the thoughts and opinions of others
CLO 6 - Graduates of the Bachelor of Arts demonstrate ethical thinking and practice through social and creative enquiry which recognises diversity and the rights and perspectives of others
Employment Prospects Students with a degree in philosophy are very attractive to employers in the public sector, the professions, and business who value the ability to organise and analyse data, and draw clear, sound judgements.
Recommended Double Majors English and Creative Writing; Global Politics and Policy; History
Excluded Minors Ethics; Philosophy
Main research areas Ethics, hermeneutics, history of metaphysics, theories of mind, phenomenology, feminist philosophy.
Languages and Writing Skills Philosophy students are strongly encouraged to include a writing unit in their selection of a general elective at either Part I or Part II. It is also recommended that students consider studying a language other than English, with Indonesian, Japanese, Biblical Hebrew and New Testament Greek, all available at Murdoch.
Internet Access RequirementsMurdoch units normally include an online component comprising materials, discussions, lecture recordings and assessment activities. All students, regardless of their location or mode of study, need to have access to and be able to use computing devices with browsing capability and a connection to the Internet via Broadband (Cable, ADSL or Mobile) or Wireless. The Internet connection should be readily available and allow large amounts of data to be streamed or downloaded (approximately 100MB per lecture recording). Students also need to be able to enter into online discussions and submit assignments online.

Course Structure - 72 credit points

Part I - 24 credit points

Year 1 - 24 credit points

Transition Unit - 3 credit points

BAR100 Academic Learning Skills - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external, S2-internal, S2-external

Breadth Unit for Degree - 3 credit points

BAR150 Ideas and Identity - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external, S2-internal, S2-external

Core Units - 6 credit points

PHL130 Introduction to Philosophy - 3 points
MURDOCH: S2-internal, S2-external

PHL131 Critical and Creative Thinking - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external

General Electives - 12 credit points

Select from any 100-level units offered by the University, subject to individual unit prerequisites. Students are advised to consider using General Elective points to meet the requirements of a second major or minor. Any recommended double majors and minors will be included in the major's description.

Part II - 48 credit points

University-Wide Breadth Units - 6 credit points  Unit List

Select from the prescribed list of University-Wide Breadth Units. A unit cannot be used to satisfy both this Breadth Unit requirement and the requirements of a major or minor. If taken at 100 level the unit(s) will be attributed to Part I. Note that no more than 30 credit points at Part I may be credited towards course completion requirements.

Year 2 - 21 credit points

Research Skills Unit - 3 credit points

The Research Skills unit to be taken will depend on the student's Primary Major enrolment. Select from the following.

For Primary Major in Social and Developmental Psychology

BSC201 Psychology: Measurement, Design and Analysis - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal

For All Other Primary Majors

BAR200 Developing Research Skills and Methods - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external, S2-internal, S2-external

Core Unit - 3 credit points

PHL205 Critical Metaphysics - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external

Specified Electives - 6 credit points

Select from the Specified Elective Unit List below.

General Electives - 9 credit points

Select from any 200- to 400-level units offered by the University, subject to individual unit prerequisites. Students are advised to consider using General Elective points to meet the requirements of a second major or minor. Any recommended double majors and minors will be included in the major's description.

Year 3 - 21 credit points

Research Skills Unit - 3 credit points

The Research Skills unit to be taken will depend on the student's Primary Major enrolment. Select from the following.

For Primary Major in Social and Developmental Psychology

BSC302 Advanced Quantitative Research Methods - 3 points
MURDOCH: S2-internal

For All Other Primary Majors

BAR300 Advanced Research in the Arts - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external, S2-internal, S2-external

Core Units - 6 credit points

PHL377 Life, Death and Meaning - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external

PHL317 Meaning and Interpretation - 3 points
MURDOCH: S1-internal, S1-external

Specified Electives - 3 credit points

Select from the Specified Elective Unit List below.

General Electives - 9 credit points

Select from any 200- to 400-level units offered by the University, subject to individual unit prerequisites. Students are advised to consider using General Elective points to meet the requirements of a second major or minor. Any recommended double majors and minors will be included in the major's description.

Specified Elective Unit List

Select Specified Electives from the following units during Years 2 and 3, subject to individual unit prerequisites. At least one unit must be at 300 level.

PHL207 Existentialism - 3 points
Not available this year

PHL209 Metaphors of Mind - 3 points
MURDOCH: S2-internal, S2-external

PHL210 Applied and Professional Ethics - 3 points
Not available this year

PHL315 Aesthetics - 3 points
Not available this year

PHL316 Ancient Greek Ideas - 3 points
MURDOCH: S2-internal, S2-external

PHL206 Moral and Political Philosophy - 3 points
MURDOCH: S2-internal, S2-external

For assistance with course planning, please contact your Student Advisor.

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