Philosophy, Politics and Economics

Subject UNIB10014 (2014)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2014.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 1 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2014.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 36 hours total, 2 x 1 hour lectures and 1 x 1 hour tutorial per week
Total Time Commitment:

96 hours, 8 hours per week

Prerequisites: None
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:



Academic Programs Office
Melbourne School of Population and Global Health
Tel: +61 3 8344 9339
Fax: +61 3 8344 0824

Subject Overview:

This subject will provide a foundation in ethical, political, and economic methodologies that will be bought to bear on the analysis and evaluation of the processes and institutions that shape society. Areas of major public debate concerning justice and the distribution of resources will be examined from the perspective of philosophy, politics, medicine and economics, with experts from these fields helping to develop the skills to understand and respond to the challenges in creating a healthy, just society. In particular, we will consider the nature of justice and its relation to equality and freedom; the features and morality of a free market; how we should distribute health resources; the ethics of climate change; and what moral obligations we have to the wellbeing of those in other countries.

Learning Outcomes:

Students completing this subject should:

  • appreciate how the theoretical insights and methodological tools of all four disciplines can be applied to the analysis of complex issues;
  • be able to demonstrate knowledge of the links between the disciplines, as well as the way in which their perspectives can both cohere and conflict;
  • understand some of the main traditional and contemporary theories within the disciplines of philosophy, politics, medicine and economics;
  • be able to evaluate the role of the market in modern society from an economic and philosophical standpoint;
  • appreciate different principles that are relevant to thinking about social justice.
  • One 800-word essay due early semester (20%)
  • One 1200-word essay due mid-semester (30%)
  • One 2 hour exam held during the University's examination period at the end of semester (50%)
Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

Students will develop skills in:

  • critical thought, communication, research and organisation;
  • the interpretation and use of economic and population health graphs;
  • the construction and evaluation of normative arguments;
  • the analysis of complex issues;
  • the identification and use of different theoretical frameworks as they are employed to address issues of social justice, freedom, equality and health;
  • the ability to analyse concepts and understand the theoretical commitments and practical consequences that follow from them.
Related Breadth Track(s): Debating Diversity in Society

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