FILO Science and Society

Course content

The course provides students with knowledge and understanding of

  • models of explanation and understanding, scientific evidence and confirmation, the roles played by values, and scientific objectivity in contemporary philosophy of science
  • core scientific methodologies in natural sciences (e.g. physics, biology, and neuroscience) and social sciences (e.g. cognitive psychology, sociology, anthropology, and linguistics) with special attention to experimental, observational, and qualitative research methods
  • the use of scientific explanations, models, and results in public debates and political decision-making
  • the role of science in democratic societies.

Kandidatuddannelsen i Filosofi, 2019-ordningen:

Videnskab og Samfund:  HFIK04041E

Kandidattilvalg på filosofi, 2019-ordningen

Videnskab og Samfund: HFIK14041E

Learning outcome

The course trains students’ abilities to

  • account critically for positions and discussions in recent philosophy of science concerning explanation, evidence, values or objectivity
  • apply philosophical arguments and theories to the understanding of key aspects of scientific methodology and practice
  • use philosophical arguments to evaluate the use of science in society

The course trains competencies to identify good and bad scientific arguments and conclusions, as well as to provide a clear and well-argued written and oral presentation of complex, socially relevant issues.

The method of instruction involves both weekly lectures, seminars and scheduled group work. Students should expect to prepare for the weekly seminars by doing different kinds of exercises (for example, write and upload short discussion papers).

We will read articles and book chapters by contemporary philosophers of science (e.g. E. Sober, N. Cartwright, P. Godfrey-Smith, and H.E. Longino) and critically evaluate and assess concrete discussions and cases in politics, debates about race, evolutionary biology, and psychology.

The course is open to elective students but course material and instruction will presuppose knowledge about philosophical literature, problems, and methods corresponding to a 1st semester’s master’s course.

Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)
Type of assessment
Oral defence
Censorship form
External censorship

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 56
  • Preparation
  • 353,5
  • English
  • 409,5


Course number
Programme level
Full Degree Master
Full Degree Master choice

1 semester

Study Board of Media, Cognition and Communication
Contracting department
  • Department of Media, Cognition and Communication
Contracting faculty
  • Faculty of Humanities
Course Coordinator
  • Thor Grünbaum   (3-7b6e79476f7c7435727c356b72)

Thor Grünbaum
Laura Jahn

Saved on the 27-05-2021

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