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Why does the universe exist, rather than nothing at all? Does life imply a designer? Can we show by pure logic that a supreme being exists? Is a person a non-physical soul or only a neural net encased in a skull? Can I survive my death or is belief in an afterlife a trick of evolution? Isn't all the suffering in the world evidence against the hypothesis of a benevolent God? Can human beings tell what is morally right and wrong, or do we need a 'God's-eye-view'? Is science compatible with religion? Is there one and only one true religion? What is 'faith' and what is 'reason' - and who decides? This course presupposes no prior knowledge of the philosophy of religion; it is aimed at students from a wide range of backgrounds, as well as philosophy majors.
Not only is philosophy one of the most interesting and challenging subjects, it teaches skills that employers want: thinking outside the box, logic, ethics, and excellent writing and communication skills. At UC you can do either a BA or a BSc in Philosophy, or combine a Philosophy major with the LLB, BCom, or another degree.BA or BSc students who major in philosophy must normally take at least two 100-level PHIL courses, plus at least three 200-level PHIL courses (including PHIL233), plus at least 60-points from 300-level PHIL courses (including at least one course from this list: PHIL305; PHIL310; PHIL311; and PHIL317). For more information see the BA regulations and/or the BSc regulations.
The aim of this course is that you will learn toUnderstand and analyse central problems in the philosophy of religion and in the ‘science vs religion’ debateThink independently, question assumptions, and assess evidence for conflicting views Communicate clearly and precisely about conceptual problems, and use evidence-based reasoning, both orally and in written reports.
This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:
Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award
Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.
Employable, innovative and enterprising
Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.
Any 15 points at 100 level in PHIL, orany 60 points at 100 level from the Schedule V of the BA or the BSc.
Students must attend one activity from each section.
Contact Diane for further information.
Assessment to be arranged.There is no final exam in this course.
Peterson, Hasker, Reichenbach, and Basinger, Reason and Religious Belief: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Religion, 5th edition (Oxford Univ. Press, 2012). Copies are available in UBS and on 3-hour loan in the High Demand Collection in the Library.Numerous readings, videos, and audio files are also available in Learn.(Image: "Earth Eastern Hemisphere" by NASA, available under public domain.)
Philosophy Essay Writing Guide (available to all enrolled Philosophy students)
Domestic fee $785.00
International fee $3,500.00
* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.
For further information see
Humanities and Creative Arts