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Unit information: Readings in Value Theory in 2020/21

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Unit name Readings in Value Theory
Unit code PHIL10033
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Pearson
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of Philosophy
Faculty Faculty of Arts


This unit will explore one or more key issues in Value Theory through the close reading of two or more central works by key historical thinkers in the area and by the critical analysis of the ideas and arguments these works present. The unit will also introduce students to some of the key secondary literature on the relevant texts and will consider how the ideas presented in these texts relate to each other and to issues in the modern philosophical debate.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of the unit students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate a thorough knowledge and understanding of the texts covered,
  2. Engage critically with the positions and arguments presented in these texts,
  3. Demonstrate familiarity with some of the key secondary literature on the texts covered,
  4. Relate the ideas presented in the different texts covered to each other,
  5. Relate the ideas presented in the texts covered to modern philosophical debates,
  6. Give clear and effective oral presentations on philosophical ideas and arguments.

Teaching details

Lectures, small group work, individual exercises, seminars and virtual learning environment.

Assessment Details

Summative: 3000 word summative essay - 100% [designed to test ILOs 1-5] + Formative: digital presentation [designed to test ILOs 1-6]

Reading and References

Aristotle, The Nicomachean Ethics, (translated by David Ross, revised by J. L. Ackrill and J. O. Urmson), OUP, 1998.

S. Broadie and C. Rowe, Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics, OUP, 2002.

Confucius, The Analects, (translated by D. Lau), Penguin, 1979.

Plato, Five Dialogues, (translated by G Grube), Hackett, 2002.

Irwin, T., Plato’s Ethics, OUP, 1995