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Philosophy of Social Sciences PHD102

The general aim of the philosophy of social science is to resolve the many axiological, ontological, epistemological and methodological issues to which social science gives rise. The course provides an introduction to current debates over some of the most important of these issues.


Course description for study year 2021-2022. Please note that changes may occur.

Facts
Emnekode

PHD102

Versjon

1

Vekting (SP)

5

Semester undervisningsstart

Autumn

Antall semestre

1

Vurderingsemester

Autumn

Undervisningsspråk

English

Tilbys av

Faculty of Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences

Learning outcome

Knowledge

After completing the course, students should:

  • Have advanced knowledge of central issues in the philosophy of social science.
  • Have advanced knowledge of major approaches to the relevant issues.
  • Have advanced knowledge of the relevance of the philosophy of social science for social scientific research.

Skills

After completing the course, students should:

  • Be able to formulate new research questions within the philosophy of social science.
  • Be able to conduct research in the philosophy of social science at an international level.
  • Be able to apply concepts and theories within the philosophy of social science to social scientific research in fruitful ways.

General competence

After completing the course, students should:

  • Be able to communicate the results of research in the philosophy of social science through recognized national and international channels.
  • Be able to participate in debates within the philosophy of social science in international fora.
  • Be able to identify new and relevant ethical challenges, and conduct their research with academic integrity.
Content
The course focuses on the following issues:
  • The general nature of social science, and the relation between social science and natural science.
  • The general nature of social reality, and the sense in which social phenomena may be said to be socially constructed.
  • The role of values in social science, and the sense in which, and the extent to which, social science can be objective.
  • The role of causal claims in social science, and the scientific significance of having to distinguish between different concepts of causation and causal evidence.
  • The nature of explanation in social science, and the difference between holism and individualism about explanation.
  • The role of interpretation in social science, and the sense in which, and the extent to which, social science may be characterized as interpretative.
  • The nature of rationality, and the role of rationality assumptions in social science.
Required prerequisite knowledge
Participants must be enrolled in a PhD programme.
Recommended prerequisites
The course is integrated with PHD101: Research Design, but can also be taken as a stand-alone course.
Eksamen / vurdering
Vurderingsform Vekting Varighet Karakter Hjelpemiddel
Individual paper 1/1 Pass - Fail

An individual paper of 4000 words (+/- 10%) in English on a self-chosen topic approved by the instructor. The paper must be submitted six weeks after the end of the course and will be evaluated as Pass/Fail.

Coursework requirements
At least one presentation. Active participation in discussions
Course teacher(s)
Course coordinator: Tarjei Mandt Larsen
Method of work
The course will be given in the form of five full-day seminars. A detailed timetable will be made available at the beginning of the course-semester.
Course assessment
The course participants are encouraged to contribute to the course evaluation. An evaluation form will be made available to the candidates after the papers are handed in.
Literature
Search for literature in Leganto