Topics in Moral Psychology

Subject 161-432 (2009)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2009. Search for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 4 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2009:

For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: A 2-hour lecture/seminar per week
Total Time Commitment: 2 contact hours/week, 8 additional hours/week. Total of 10 hours per week.
Prerequisites: Admission to the postgraduate diploma or fourth-year honours in philosophy.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:


Dr Karen Jones

Subject Overview: The subject examines recent philosophical developments in the study of the psychology of moral agents. Topics to be covered may include: (1) the nature of rationality; (2) the nature of autonomy; (3) recent feminist contributions to moral psychology; (4) the relation between values and the self; (5) the role of emotion in moral psychology; (6) the relevance of moral psychology to other areas of philosophy such as metaethics.
Objectives: Students who successfully complete this subject will
  • have a detailed knowledge of some of the main philosophical issues in moral psychology;
  • acquire the ability to critically engage with the most recent literature on the issues discussed;
  • have a sophisticated understanding of the relevance of moral psychology to other areas of philosophy such as metaethics.
Assessment: A 5000-word essay 100% (due at the end of semester).
Prescribed Texts: A booklet of readings will be available.
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills: Students who successfully complete this subject will
  • develop skills in constructing arguments and assessing their strength;
  • improve their ability to develop and defend their own position with regard to complex theoretical issues;
  • have learnt to present complex ideas clearly.
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Philosophy

Download PDF version.