EDUC42830 Philosophy of Education

Academic Year 2022/2023

This module gives students the opportunity to think critically and carefully about the key concepts underpinning their teaching practice.

Such concepts include but are not limited to - Knowledge, Truth, Power, Democracy, Authority, Autonomy, Freedom, and Voice.

Comparing the practice of philosophy to the practice of plumbing, philosopher Mary Midgley has written that "elaborate cultures like ours have beneath their surface a fairly complex system which is usually unnoticed but which sometimes goes wrong." This module in Philosophy of Education honours Midgley's disciplinary picture and encourages student teachers to consider the "complex system" of education and its very real potential to falter and break down.

Students on this module will be asked to consider the paradigmatic and prescriptive assumptions that they themselves bring to their teaching practice - and they will be encouraged to both critically engage with these assumptions and explore alternatives.

They will be invited to consider a range of classic and contemporary philosophical thinkers, including Gert Biesta, Amanda Fulford, Stanley Cavell, Nel Noddings, Hannah Arendt, Matthew Lipman and Ann Margaret Sharp.

No prior knowledge of philosophy is required or assumed.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

At the end of this module students will be able to:

• Critically engage with ideas about the purpose and the nature of education
• Recognise and demonstrate an understanding of the key features of at least three different philosophies of education
• Reflect on their own philosophies of education meaningfully, identifying contradictions or challenges and areas for further inquiry
• Consider how different pedagogical approaches affect the role of the teacher and the learning experience of the student.
• Develop the skills, attributes and dispositions conducive to productive critical engagement, argument and discussion
• Explore opportunities to teach Philosophy and inquiry-based learning in education

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Philosophical inquiry-based learning including: peer and group work; lectures; critical writing; metacognitive reflection; philosophical dialogue.
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Assignment: An assignment brief will be provided by your module coordinator during the module. Varies over the Trimester n/a Standard conversion grade scale 40% Yes


Carry forward of passed components
Remediation Type Remediation Timing
In-Module Resit Prior to relevant Programme Exam Board
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Peer review activities
• Self-assessment activities

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Opportunities will be provided for self and peer-review strategies throughout the module and individual feedback will be provided post-assessment.

Name Role
Dr Rachel Farrell Lecturer / Co-Lecturer