Methods of Philosophical Discussions and Arguments (konwersatorium) - 2018/2019

Course description
General information
Lecturer:prof. dr hab. Jacek Wojtysiak
Organising unit:Faculty of Philosophy - Instytut Filozofii
Number of hours (week/semester): 2/30
Language of instruction:English
Course objective
C1 – to answer the question ‘what kinds of evidence are there for philosophical claims?’;
C2 – to learn how to build good (valid and sound) arguments;
C3 – to practice philosophical disputes;
C4 – to study the most famous philosophical arguments.
Learning outcomes
The student knows relations between philosophy and logic, science, humanities and theology; knows and understands philosophical terminology used by philosophers in their arguments and discussions; knows advanced methods of analysis, argumentation, interpretation etc. which are applied by philosophers in their papers and discussions; understands the role of argumentation in the social and cultural life.
Teaching method
Lecture, tutorial, discussion, exercises, workshop.
Course content description
1. The theory of argument (the definition, the structure, types and applications of arguments).2. Conditions of good arguments (validity, soundness, epistemic and pragmatic conditions). 3. Main rules (and schemes) of inference – typical kinds of valid arguments. 4. Grice’s conversional rules. 5. Some famous arguments of Western philosophy, esp. of analytic philosophy of religion. 6. Methods of philosophy, esp. thought experiment.
Forms of assessment
The final grade includes: a grade from the completion (50%), a grade from the work (30%), a grade from discussion (20%)
During the completion a student is supposed to answer 2 issues. The answer is assessed as following:

2 – a student answers to no issues or answers only to one, or her answer is chaotic, she does not know terminology, she cannot reconstruct problems and positions despite the teacher’s clues
3 – a student answers both questions, but her answer is chaotic, with many errors; problems and positions are recognized only with the teacher’s help, a student does not know details
4 – a student answers both questions, speaks in a communicative way, commits few mistakes, is able to give a detailed analysis of problems and positions with no teacher’s help
5 – a student provides a fluent presentation, testifying her independent reflection, can state problems on her own and suggests solutions to them

The written work is assessed as follows:
2 – a student has not provided the work, or the work is not her independent achievement, is chaotic, with wrong terminology, deficient definitions, and wrongly stated problems and solutions
3 – a student has written a work in a communicative language, with no serious language mistakes, with few essential errors as to the problems and positions
4 – a student has provided a good work and stated problems and positions correctly
5 - a student has provided a good work, stated problems and positions correctly, and sketched her opinion about them

The evaluation of the discussion on the text:

2 - a student does not participate in the discussion or has not read the text
3 – a student has read the text but cannot say anything about it, does not justify her theses
4 – a student has read the text, can talk about it, justifies her theses but commits some mistakes
5 – a student has read the text, can talk about it, justifies her theses and answers, suggests original approaches to the issues
Required reading list
A. Weston, A Rulebook for Arguments, Cambridge 2009
Ch. Daly, An Introduction to Philosophical Methods, 2010
M. Bruce, S. Barbone (eds.), Just the Arguments. 100 of the Most Important Arguments in Western Philosophy, Oxford etc. 2011
Field of study: Philosophy
Course listing in the Schedule of Courses:
Year/semester:Year II - Semester 4
Number of ECTS credits: 4
Form of assessment: Grade