Introduction to Philosophy of Psychology

Course code PHIL1060Units 10Level 1000Faculty of Education and ArtsSchool of Humanities and Social Science

This course introduces students to the philosophical issues that arise from the theory and practice of Psychology. It has been specifically designed to meet the requirements of the Bachelor of Psychology degree. Topics covered will include the scope of psychology's subject matter, the biology versus culture debate, the mind/body problem, the nature and function of worldviews, scientific method, science and psuedo-science, schools of psychological thought, and professional ethics.

Available in 2015

Callaghan CampusSemester 2
OurimbahSemester 2
Previously offered in 2014
ObjectivesOn completion of this course students will be able to:

(1) Demonstrate an understanding of the basic philosophical issues within Psychology.

(2) Demonstrate an understanding of the issues arising from (i) the diversity of psychology's subject matter, and from (ii) psychological research and practice in general.

(3) Demonstrate an understanding of (i) professional ethics, (ii) where and why professional ethics apply in the professional practice of psychology, and (iii) how general professional ethical principles are applied to particular situational cases.

(4) Demonstrate an understanding of the 'big picture' framework from which the various schools of psychological theory and practice have emerged.
ContentContent will be organised around the following topics:

(1) Basic problems in Philosophy of Psychology (e.g. the biology/culture debate, the mind/body problem, worldviews, determinism, rationalism, reduction).

(2) Philosophical bases of classical schools of Psychology (e.g. behaviourism, functionalism, psychoanalysis, cognitivism).

(3) Philosophy of scientific method (including deductive and inductive reasoning, empiricism, falsification, Kuhn, science and psuedo-science)

(4) Professionalism and Professional ethics.

Although the topics explored are philosophical in nature, the focus is on how decisions made at the philosophical level shape the theory and practice of Psychology.
Replacing Course(s)NIL
Industrial Experience0
Assumed KnowledgeQualification for entry to Bachelor of Psychology or other relevant degrees.
Modes of DeliveryFlexible Delivery / Student Centred Learning
Internal Mode
Teaching MethodsLecture
Assessment Items
Essays / Written AssignmentsEssay 1 - 1000 words, 20%
Essay 2 - 1500 words, 40%
Examination: Take HomeTake Home Examination - 2000 words, 40%
Contact HoursLecture: for 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Tutorial: for 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Timetables2015 Course Timetables for PHIL1060