Introducing Political Philosophy

Ref: C2341713

Political debates are often heated and often do not lead to a better understanding of the issues debated. Philosophy has the potential to bring clarity and calm to these debates. This short course covers key terms used in current political philosophy, for example the difference between a 'thin' and a 'thick' concept; key concepts including power and authority; influential theories such as utilitarian and Kantian theories; and an indication of wider current debates such as the debate between 'ideal' and 'non-ideal' political theory.

Course aim

To introduce students to central terms and theories in current political philosophy and give them the opportunity to apply them to examples of their choice and/or set by the tutor.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is for beginners

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

  • Define at least two key terms in political philosophy
  • Explain at least one important concept in political philosophy
  • Give a short summary of at least one type of political theory for example of the Kantian or utilitarian approach
  • Indicate what 'ideal' and 'non-ideal' theorists disagree about
  • Give a view, with reasons, about the ways in which a philosophical approach philosophy may help understanding in political debates

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning
  • You will be encouraged to consider other students work and give your opinions and suggestions

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation

Download full course information sheet

Introducing Political Philosophy

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Conditions

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2019
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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