Programme And Module Handbook
 
Programme Specification


Date Specification Approved
College College Arts and Law
School Phil, Theology and Religion
Department Philosophy
Partner College and School Soc Policy, Sociology & Crimin
Collaborative Organisation and Form of Collaboration
Qualification and Programme Title B.A. Philosophy and Sociology with Year Abroad Full-time
Programme Code 708B
Delivery Location Campus
Language of Study English
Length of Programme 4 Year(s)
Accreditations This programme has no outside accreditations
Aims of the Programme The programmes aim to provide students with an understanding and appreciation of central areas of philosophy, its methods and history. It aims to engage their interest in and enthusiasm for issues of philosophy and to foster within them the skills distinctive of good philosophy: in particular, the abilities
- to analyse abstract claims and arguments accurately,
- to present their own views verbally and in writing, clearly and with supporting argument,
- to collaborate with others in the course of such analyses and presentations
The programmes aim to provide students with the opportunity to engage with the range of expertise and internationally recognized research undertaken in the Dept. of Philosophy. Through these various aims and provisions, the programmes will enrich the lives of students who take them, and will provide society with the resource of graduates who can think and express their thoughts in a clear and logical manner. Graduates equipped with these transferable skills as well as with the knowledge of the subject’s contents will be employed in a wide range of occupations.

Stage 1 is designed to offer students a broad foundation for the academic study of philosophy. Some of the modules are compulsory, focussing on broad themes and issues in key foundational areas of the subject. Philosophical methodology is emphasized in all of these modules, and also in special additional training sessions during the first semester.

Stage 2 is where students consolidate their philosophical skills and deepen their knowledge and understanding of the areas of philosophy that interest them most. To that end, a good amount of choice is offered across the two semesters, but not so much as to allow students to specialize in one area only. Towards the end of the stage, students who opt to write a dissertation at Stage 3 begin work on this - the Level H module, Philosophical Project and through a programme of lectures, seminars and workshops connected to this, they further consolidate their analytical, presentational and team working skills.

During the year abroad, students continue to develop and consolidate their philosophical knowledge and skills. In particular (and depending on where they go) this part of the programme is likely to expose them to philosophical traditions and methods rather different from those they encounter in Birmingham, and this exposure should help them to develop a more balanced, multi-faceted facility with the subject.

Stage 3 provides students with even more choice, and with more specialized modules delivered by convenors who are actively engaged in germane cutting-edge research. The only compulsory module for JH students is for those who do not take a dissertation of similar independent student in their other subject: this is Philosophical Project through which students write a 6000 word dissertation during Stage 3. This undertaking should, even more than the other modules at this level, help them to refine the research, analytical and presentational skills that characterize the programme as a whole. The degree offers a comprehensive, rigorous introduction to Sociology as a theoretically informed and evidence based discipline. The programme has a strong theoretical core at each level which critically examines the major sociological traditions and perspectives as tools for understanding modern societies. This is paralleled by training in the analysis of empirical sociological research, the design of research programmes and the methods for collecting, interpreting and presenting sociological data. Students are able to apply their core theoretical and empirical training in the critical and comparative analysis of major substantive sociological topics. These include patterns of social divisions such as those of gender, ethnicity and social class. Students approach these issues by pursuing the distinctively sociological questions of the relationships between i
Programme Outcomes
Students are expected to have Knowledge and Understanding of: Which will be gained through the following Teaching and Learning methods: and assessed using the following methods:
The character of Sociology as a discipline that is both theoretically informed and evidence based
The major sociological traditions and perspectives and critical responses to them
The method of critical comparative analysis
The analytical issues of the relationship between individuals, groups and institutions and the processes that underpin stability and change
The substantive issues of the origins and consequences of social diversity, divisions and inequalities, especially as they relate to ethnicity, gender and class
The nature and appropriate use of research strategies and methods in sociological research
Some cutting-edge debates in contemporary Sociology
The texts, theories and arguments of some major philosophers, past and present
Some central theories and arguments in the fields of logic, metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of mind, ethics broadly understood
A range of techniques of philosophical reasoning, and of how those techniques are brought to bear on philosophical theories and problems
Basic logical notation and proof procedures, and of the most important ways in which those techniques inform analytic philosophy in general.
The (probably distinctive) philosophical theories and positions taught at the university visited during the year abroad (only applicable to DipHE and BA)
Lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops, presentations, student-led discussion groups, group project work
Lectures, tutorials, seminar discussion, independent study, close crucial reading of texts, the design and construction of essays and other assessments. Full participation in the modules taken at the university visited during the year abroad (only applicable to DipHE and BA).
Essays, unseen examinations, tailored tasks for the assessment of methods, student-led dissertation project (at Stage 3)
Exams, essays, coursework exercises, project work. Assessments offered at the university visited during the year abroad.
Students are expected to have attained the following Skills and other Attributes: Which will be gained through the following Teaching and Learning methods: and assessed using the following methods:
The ability to work individually and in groups
The ability to work flexibly and creatively, demonstrating independence and reflexivity
The ability to source, summarise, and critically engage with the existing theoretical and empirical material on a subject and deploy this, where appropriate, in constructing arguments
The ability to formulate research questions, select appropriate research tools, recognise ethical issues and collect and interpret sociological data
The ability to work to a given length, format, brief and deadline, properly referencing sources and ideas and making use, as appropriate, of a problem solving approach
Presentation skills and audience awareness
The ability to explore cutting-edge sociological debates, drawing upon the range of personal skills developed
To interpret philosophical writing from a variety of ages and traditions
To analyse positions and arguments
To present cogent arguments in defence of their views, verbally and in writing
To understand and use a range of specialised philosophical terminology
To display independent understanding of philosophical views and arguments, and to to work independently - including devising and researching pieces of philosophical writing of various lengths – and in groups
To communicate, and organise their studies, effectively
The capacity to be competent and effective users of IT resources for research purposes, word processing. Students will also be able to use IT communication tools effectively
Facility in the (probably distinctive) philosophical methods taught at the university visited during the year abroad.
Seminars based upon critical analysis and debate, workshops, demonstrations, skills training sessions, dissertation workshops, practical training exercises, student-led discussion groups
Lectures, tutorials, seminars and workshop discussions (including, at Stage 1 and 2, sessions with explicitly methodological foci), independent study, close reading of texts, the design and construction of essays and other assessments. Communication: these skills honed mainly through tutorials, seminars and workshop discussions and through the design and construction of essays and other assessments. Additional support in respect of organisation is provided through the Personal Tutor system. Research design and construction of essays and other assessments. Full participation in the modules taken at the university visited during the year abroad (only applicable to the DipHE and BA).
Essays, unseen examinations, tailored tasks for the assessment of methods, student-led dissertation project (at Stage 3)
Exams, essays, coursework exercises, project work (and as part of several modules, group presentations.) Word-processed assessments; evidence of appropriate use of web resources. Assessments offered at the university visited.