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Last modified: 04 Sep 2017 16:30

Course Overview

How do we know right from wrong? What are our responsibilities towards others? How should we engage with social and political problems and issues? What constitutes a good life? This course provides an opportunity for students to explore the rich tradition of Western ethical reflection and moral formation. It does so by surveying the various ways in which ethics and morality have been understood and approached by major figures in the Western tradition.

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 2
Session Second Sub Session Credit Points 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits)
Campus None. Sustained Study No
  • Dr Michael Mawson
  • Dr Michael Mawson

Qualification Prerequisites

  • Either Programme Level 1 or Programme Level 2

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • Any Undergraduate Programme (Studied)

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

This course provides an opportunity for students from any or no religious background to explore the Christian and Western philosophical tradition of moral reflection and formation. It does so by surveying how moral questions have been approached by various figures throughout the Western tradition, including Aristotle, Augustine, Aquinas, Kant, Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, Dietrich Bonhoeffer and more. Students will also examine how attending to the views of such theologians and philosophers on their own terms might shed light on contemporary questions and moral dilemmas.

Degree Programmes for which this Course is Prescribed

  • Bachelor of Divinity (with Honours)

Contact Teaching Time

32 hours

This is the total time spent in lectures, tutorials and other class teaching.

Teaching Breakdown


1st Attempt

1 two-hour written examination (60%); continuous assessment (40%). Continuous assessment will be assessed via typewritten reports (of one page length) on the set readings, to be submitted in hard copy at the beginning of each tutorial session.


1 two-hour written examination (100%).

Formative Assessment

Formative assessment occurs orally throughout the course based on the students' participation in the tutorials (preparation and contribution to the discussions).


Feedback will be provided via written comments on tutorial assignments.

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