Think Like a Philosopher

Ref: C3527601

An accessible, interactive and life-centred approach to the deeper questionings of humankind; working towards greater self-understanding and a wider perspective of life-experiences by examining answers that modern philosophers have sought to provide.

Additional information about this course

4.30 finish on first and last sessions.

Course aim

To enable and encourage learners to view their own personal life experiences, as well as different world-views and ideologies, in the light of some key philosophical concepts. No session 15th February

Who is the course for?

What topics will this course cover

Work - what is work? What are its human and personal implications? Laughter – Why do we laugh at Basil Fawlty? Sex - “Sex is not the answer. Sex is the question. “Yes” is the answer”. Does how we perceive "the world" depend on our gender? Ego-boundaries - “I think, therefore I am”…but where do I “stop and start”? Thresholds - where (what) are the thresholds in life? My significant threshold? Freedom - How free are we? What is freedom? Do we fear freedom?,

What will it be like?

WEA classes are friendly and supportive. You will be encouraged to work together with your fellow students and tutor. You will be asked to share your ideas and views in the class and work with the group to give and accept feedback in a supportive environment. The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you to be actively involved in your learning. You may be asked to undertake work to support your course outside of your class.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

1. Identify the main issues addressed by philosophy and the major world religions. 2. Evaluate their political, historical, cultural and worldwide significance. 3. Apply insights from the course to the conflict of ideologies at a national and international level. 4. Articulate and evaluate their own beliefs and those of others. 5. Apply ideas, insights and structures from the course to their personal narratives of life experiences.

How will I know I'm making progress?

Your tutor will ask you to present, in whatever form is appropriate, an evaluation of the course and of your own learning. Your tutor will observe and take note of your contributions to discussions (whole-group and small-group), providing feedback where appropriate either at the time or following the session, in person or by email. Your tutor will ask you questions from time to time to check the effectiveness of teaching and learning.

What else do I need to know, do or bring?


Reading and information sources

Any general introductory book on philosophy will be helpful - The only essential is an open mind and a readiness to join in discussion with others.

What could the course lead to?

Melvyn Bragg's "In Our Time" (R4 Thurs 9.00am) and associated message boards Reith Lectures - especially the online archives and message boards

Download full course outline

Think Like a Philosopher Course Outline

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This course has been cancelled.


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  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
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  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2016
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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