Admission to this course is restricted to:
Students enrolled in the BA programme Philosophy: Global and Comparative Perspectives
International pre-master’s students in Philosophy who are in possession of an admission statement, and for whom this course is part of their programme.
Epistemology is the area of philosophy concerned with knowledge. In this course we will investigate a range of philosophical questions regarding the nature and limits of our knowledge.
When can we say that we know something? In what way do our perceptual experiences justify our beliefs? What is it for our beliefs to be ‘justified’ in the first place? Do we know anything at all? These are the sorts of difficult but intriguing questions that we will be discussing.
We will encounter a range of influential philosophical theses – such as scepticism, foundationalism, reliabilism, and Mooreanism. The focus of our classes will be on the arguments and problems that have motivated philosophers to propose these philosophical views.
This course aims to familiarize students with the central arguments and positions in epistemology, and to accustom students to the vocabulary that contemporary epistemologists use for the precise statements of their views.
Students who successfully complete the course will have a good understanding of:
reasons for and against central views in Western epistemology;
key concepts of epistemology;
influential texts in (the history of) epistemology.
Students who successfully complete the course will be able to:
think critically about the central arguments and problems in Western epistemology;
use the technical vocabulary needed for the precise expression of positions in epistemology;
write a short argumentative essay on the basis of assigned questions.
The timetable is available on the following website:
Mode of instruction
Lectures (2 hours per week)
Tutorials (2 hours per week)
Attendance at both is required.
Total course load 5 EC x 28 hours = 140 hours
Attending lectures or seminars: 13 x 2 hours per week = 26 hours
Attending tutorials: 13 x 2 hours per week = 26 hours
Midterm and final exam: 2 × 3 hrs = 6 hrs
Preparation lectures and/or seminars: 13 x 4 = 52 hours
Preparation midterm exam: 15 hours
Prepatration final exam: 15 hours
short weekly written assignments, adequate attendance and participation;
two written exams
The final mark for the course is established by determining the weighted average of the subtests.
weekly written assignments, adequate attendance and participation
midterm written exam: 40%
final written exam: 60%
Satisfactory completion of the weekly assignments is a prerequisite for obtaining the final grade.
The resit will be one written exam covering the entirety of the course material. No separate resits will be offered for mid-term tests. The mark for the resit will replace all previously earned marks for subtests.
Satisfactory completion of the weekly assignments is a prerequisite for taking the resit.
Inspection and feedback
How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organized.
Blackboard will be used for:
Submission of weekly assignments
The reading list will be posted on Blackboard.
Students are strongly advised to register in uSis through the activity number which can be found in the timetables for courses and exams.
Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs