Philosophy Coursework

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Transcript Philosophy Coursework

Philosophy Coursework
What’s it worth?
Higher Level:
Standard Level: 30%
Philosophy Coursework
What’s its aim?
• To allow you to do Philosophy ‘under
ordinary conditions, without time
constraints associated with written
• To develop your philosophical skills ‘by
applying knowledge and understanding of
philosophical ideas and concepts through
analysis of non-philosophical material’.
Philosophy Coursework
What does it show I can do?
• Apply your philosophical knowledge and
understanding to real-life examples
• Treat non-philosophical material in a
philosophical way
• Be challenged in your philosophical
Philosophy Coursework
How much do I write?
• Between 1600 and 2000 words
(This does not include bibliography or
references. Nor does it include the 200word (maximum) description of lengthier
non-philosophical stimulus material.)
Philosophy Coursework
What’s the gist of it?
• Take a non-philosophical stimulus
• Analyse it in a philosophical way
(Note that this analysis must relate to a
philosophical issue or argument raised by the
study of the course.)
Philosophy Coursework
What’s an example of a ‘non-philosophical
Novels, plays, poetry, song lyrics
Films/movies, television and radio shows
Cartoons, paintings, photographs or other visual images
Newspaper articles/letters
Internet sites
Philosophy Coursework
Are there any restrictions (apart from not
using philosophical material)?
Just three:
• If you choose a novel or play, no more than 2 pages should be
• If you choose a tv or radio show, film/movie or play, no more than 2
scenes should be used
• If it is a written stimulus you should select a short piece. If this is
200 words or less, include all of it; if more than 200 words
summarise it in not more than 200 words
Philosophy Coursework
How much time should I spend on it?
The recommendation is for 20 hours to be
allocated to this assessment component.
(Note that you may be able to complete
more than one in this time – your best one
is submitted.)
Philosophy Coursework
What are the ‘formal requirements’?
a) You must adhere to the word limits
b) You must include the following information:
Part of syllabus to which the exercise relates
Number of words
Bibliography and references
Copy of the source material
Philosophy Coursework
This shows a mirage
which raises the issue
of how we can know
the difference
between appearance
and reality.
Philosophy Coursework
Visual Image
This ‘contemplating
angel’ raises the
issue of the possible
immortality of a
human being.
Philosophy Coursework
An evocation of the
interpretation of the
human condition:
Philosophy Coursework
How much of our
‘social conditioning’ is
cultural; how much of
it part of our nature?
Philosophy Coursework
How do our mind and
body interact?
Philosophy Coursework
Despite his heterodoxy, faults and
weaknesses, Clare was a man with a
conscience. Tess was no insignificant
creature to toy with and dismiss; but a
woman living her precious life – a life
which, to herself who endured or
enjoyed it, possessed as great a
dimension as the life of the mightiest
to himself. Upon her sensations the
whole world depended to Tess;
through her existence all her fellowcreatures existed, to her. The
universe itself only came into being for
Tess on the particular day in the
particular year in which she was born.
From Tess of the d’Urbervilles by
Thomas Hardy (first published 1891)
This piece raises the
question of the ‘inner
world’ of
Philosophy Coursework
Life’s but a walking shadow,
a poor player,
That struts and frets his
hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more;
it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound
and fury,
Signifying nothing.
Act 5, scene 5
Macbeth gives an
interpretation of the
meaning of life.
Philosophy Coursework
And since to look at things in
Fifty springs is little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow
From Loveliest of Trees, The Cherry Now
by A E Housman
An illustration of the
relationship between
humans and the
natural world.
Philosophy Coursework
The dream-world and
its place as part of the
human mind; part of
human nature.
Philosophy Coursework
Internet site (Horse
The ‘clash’ between
knowledge as claimed
by science and
knowledge as claimed
by religious belief.
Philosophy Coursework
Dear Deidre,
I have been going out
with a boy for ten
weeks and he says
that he wants to move
our relationship onto
a more physical [etc.]
A moral dilemma
arising from a
common interpersonal relationship.
Philosophy Coursework
Don’t Save The Tiger!
There are only about 400
tigers left in India and
their conservation is a
waste. The amount of
money that is spent on
preserving these animals
amounts to $20 000 per
tiger per year and [etc.]
From The Times 8th January 2010
Newspaper article
The tension between
different values placed on
our treatment of animals.
Philosophy Coursework
Hancock’s Half-Hour
(The Blood Donor)
Hancock: I want to be sure it goes to the right
sort of person. I wouldn’t like to think of any
old hobbledehoy having my blood coursing
through his veins.
Nurse: When a blood transfusion is given, a
person’s background is of no consequence.
Hancock: You can’t expect me to believe that;
after all, East is East and West isNurse: Mr Hancock, blood is classified according
to group and not by accident of birth.
Hancock: I came here to give blood – not to
listen to a lecture on communism, young
Nurse: I happen to be a Conservative!
Hancock: Then kindly behave like one, madam.
TV/Radio Show
Differences among
human types: how
‘natural’ is our
Philosophy Coursework
The manipulation of
the truth for the
greater good of
society. (In this
picture the people
shown were not really
queueing at the
unemployment office.)