PP2LR-Language and Reality

Module Provider: Philosophy
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2014/5

Module Convenor: Dr Nat Hansen

Email: n.d.hansen@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
This module introduces you to some key issues at the interface of philosophy of language and metaphysics. All readings will be available online.

To give you a basic grasp of some central topics in the philosophy of language, particularly those which concern relations between language and reality.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module you will:
•understand some of the key topics in Philosophy of Language, such as debates about the nature of reference, meaning, and linguistic relativity.
•be able to present and discuss the material in essays and seminars.

Additional outcomes:
The kinds of questions addressed in this module, and the theories covered, will be relevant for all further topics in philosophy, both theoretical and practical, thus the module will provide valuable groundwork for the more focused modules in Part 3.

Outline content:
Topics to be covered are:
•thought and intentionality
•facts and truth
•semantics and pragmatics
•linguistic relativity
•realism and anti-realism

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The module is taught by lectures and seminars. The lectures will introduce you to general themes in the philosophy of language and the relation between language and reality; the Seminars will focus on the assigned weekly readings and introduce you to practices of philosophical analysis and argument. Students are expected to attend 20 lectures and 10 seminars during the term in which it is provided. All students are required to write two module essays from a list of questions supplied by the module convenor. Students are encouraged to be active in all classes, asking questions and trying to answer the questions posed by others. A reading list and schedule of lectures will be given out at the start of the course.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Seminars 10
Guided independent study 170
Total hours by term 200.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 70
Written assignment including essay 30

Other information on summative assessment:
There will be two essays, of 1500 words each, required for this course; students will have a list of six title to choose from; each essay will be worth 15% of the final marks for the module.

Electronic Submission
All coursework should be submitted electronically via Blackboard and in hard copy to the Philosophy office.

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    There will be one two-hour examination worth 70%, requiring students to answer two questions from a choice of six.

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Re-examination in August by written examination only.

    Last updated: 8 October 2014

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