Philosophy of Mind

The details
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 6
Monday 13 January 2020
Friday 20 March 2020
25 July 2019


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BA VV15 Philosophy and History,
BA VV16 Philosophy and History (Including Placement Year),
BA VV51 Philosophy and History (Including Foundation Year),
BA VV5C Philosophy and History (Including Year Abroad),
BA VV5X Philosophy and History (Including Foundation Year and Year Abroad)

Module description

The subject of this module is the nature of the mind. What is the mental and how does it differ from the non-mental? What is the nature and structure of consciousness? What is the relationship between mind and body? How does the body shape the mind? What is the self? Is the self metaphysically real or an epiphenomenal construction of the brain? Is there a best method to study the mind? Or should we endorse methodological pluralism in this area? We will raise and explore these traditional questions of the philosophy of mind with constant reference to findings from the cognitive sciences (e.g., psychology, neuroscience, and artificial intelligence). In contrast to traditional courses in the philosophy of mind, however, we will take a phenomenological approach to these questions, where phenomenology refers to the philosophical tradition inaugurated by Edmund Husserl. Students will thus not only learn about classic and contemporary Analytic approaches to the philosophy of mind, but they will also study the practice of phenomenology and develop an appreciation of its enduring relevance to inquiry into the nature of the mind.

Module aims

This module aims to introduce students to central issues and developments in the philosophy of mind.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module students will:

have a grasp of contemporary metaphysical and epistemological theories of the mind, as well as a grasp of some of the key issues surrounding particular mental phenomena;
be equipped to undertake study and independent reading that assumes familiarity with contemporary philosophy of mind.

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

1 x two-hour seminar each week in the spring term. Week 21 is Reading Week. There will be a revision session in the summer term.


This module does not appear to have a published bibliography.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework Reading Quizzes TOTAL 15%
Coursework Writing Workshop 15%
Coursework Essay - 2000 words 20/03/2020 35%
Practical Argument Reconstruction (group work) 20%
Practical Individual Presentations 15%

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Matt Burch



External examiner

Dr Thomas Joseph Stern
University College London
Senior Lecturer
Available via Moodle
Of 36 hours, 36 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

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