Accessibility statement

Philosophy & Society - PHI00124I

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  • Department: Philosophy
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Christopher Jay
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: I
  • Academic year of delivery: 2024-25
    • See module specification for other years: 2023-24

Module summary

This module is about how society influences philosophy, and how philosophy influences or might influence society: one stream of activities considers what counts as philosophy, and who counts as a philosopher (with some attention to how social attitudes towards particular groups or individuals might influence who is counted as a philosopher); and another stream involves the production of a podcast exploring the philosophy behind an issue of social or political importance or contemporary relevance. The module involves both individual work and group work.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 2 2024-25

Module aims

This module aims to develop a range of skills and to explore some issues to do with the nature of philosophy as a discipline and the ways in which it can contribute to public debate about a range of issues. By working together in groups to produce a podcast, students will hone their professional skills, working as part of a team and undertaking independent research. They will also be encouraged to develop the ability to speak articulately and accessibly about difficult ideas, and to see how philosophical doctrines and arguments might inform public discourse. They will be encouraged to reflect critically on what philosophy is, and what it isn’t, and which voices have something to contribute to philosophical reflection, taking into account the various ways in which social attitudes can shape our ideas about which voices might have something to contribute.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module, students should be able to:

  • Present and explain difficult material relating to philosophical issues of social and political concern.
  • Articulate complex ideas clearly and succinctly, without loss of precision, to a non-specialist audience.
  • Explain some of the issues around inclusion and diversity in philosophy.
  • Evaluate the propriety of various methodologies found in philosophy.
  • Defend informed opinions about what might or might not reasonably be counted as philosophy, and who might or might not reasonably be counted as a philosopher.


Task Length % of module mark
Podcast recording & portfolio
N/A 50
Summative Assessment1
N/A 50

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Summative Assessment 1
N/A 50
Summative Assessment 2
N/A 50

Module feedback

Feedback on students’ research will be given week-by-week throughout the semester, in weekly workshop meetings. Feedback on formative work will be given in person or in writing one week after submission.

Indicative reading

Appropriate reading will depend upon the choices students make about which social or political issues to focus on in their podcast, and which texts they identify to critically assess as pieces of philosophy.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.