Course code Filz1018

Credit points 3

Philosophy, Ethics, Aesthetics

Total Hours in Course120

Number of hours for lectures24

Number of hours for seminars and practical classes24

Independent study hours72

Date of course confirmation20.10.2022

Responsible UnitInstitute of Social Sciences and Humanities

Course developer

author Sociālo un humanitāro zinātņu institūts

Gunārs Brāzma

Dr. phil.

Course abstract

The aim of the course is to develop students’ understanding of philosophy, its problems, methods, and its role of in contemporary society. The course focuses on the issues of ethics, political philosophy, and on philosophy’s interdisciplinary role. The course develops analytical and critical thinking, skills in recognizing and solving the problems of practical ethics. In addition to lectures the course includes studies of philosophical texts, discussions in seminars and presentations of students’ papers.

Learning outcomes and their assessment

1. Knowledge: a student knows and understands philosophical terminology, conceptions and argumentation in their historical development – seminars’ discussions, final written test.
2. Professional skills: a student is able to evaluate and compare philosophical ideas and arguments, to formulate topical philosophical and multidisciplinary problems, to select and critically assess information related to philosophical topics – seminars’ discussions, student’s paper and its presentation.
Soft skills: a student is able to plan tasks responsibly, to analyse information, to participate in group activities – seminars’ discussion, student’s paper and its presentation.
3. Competence: a student is able to perceive and solve responsibly ethical and multidisciplinary problems, to integrate these skills in further professional activity – seminars’ discussion, student’s paper and its presentation.

Course Content(Calendar)

1. Philosophy, its aims and methods (lecture 1h, seminar 1h).
2. Ethics and morality. Kinds of values (lecture 1h, seminar 1h).
3. Principles of ethics (lectures 4h, seminars 4h).
4. Applied ethics. Bioethics and environmental ethics (lectures 3h, seminars 3h)
5. Ethical problems related to development of technology (lectures 2h, seminars 2h).
6. Moral relativism and its critique (lecture 1h, seminar 1h).
7. Political philosophy (lectures 2h, seminars 2h).
8. The beginnings of Ancient philosophy (lecture 1h, seminar 1 h).
9. Virtue ethics (lecture 1h, seminar 1h).
10. Roman culture and stoicism (lecture 1h, seminar 1h)
11. Religions and ethics (lecture 1h, seminar 1h).
12. Middle Ages. Philosophy of religion (lecture 1h, seminar 1h).
13. Modern Philosophy (lectures 3h, seminars 3h).
14. Western aesthetics and art (lectures 2h).
15. Presentations of students’ papers (seminars 2h).

Requirements for awarding credit points

Exam (written test). Exam’s accumulating assessment of study results: participation in seminars’ discussions (30%), final written test (40%), student’s paper and its presentation (30%).
Scientific literature chosen by a lecturer must be studied and discussed during seminars. Student’s paper must be elaborated and presented. Final written test in the end of the course.

Description of the organization and tasks of students’ independent work

1. The studies of scientific literature chosen by a lecturer for preparation of seminars’ topics.
2. A student’s paper and its presentation.

Criteria for Evaluating Learning Outcomes

Seminars – participation in seminars’ discussions, by justifying student’s opinion and answering questions. Participation in each seminar is evaluated in 3 grades scale: 1 – medium, 2 – good, 3 – very good. Results are summed up in the end of semester.
Student’s paper in Word format (at least 8 pages, Font 12, line spacing 1.5) and its presentation – content and presentation skills are evaluated. Paper and its presentation are evaluated with single grade according grade scale 10.
Final written test – evaluated in grade scale 10.

Compulsory reading

1. Praktiskā filosofija. LLU. Sociālo zinātņu fakultāte. Filozofijas katedra; zin. kon. A. Strods. Jelgava: LLU, 2008. 549 lpp.
2. Kūle M., Kūlis R. Filosofija. Rīga: Zvaigzne ABC, 1998. 656 lpp.
3. Stumpf S., Fieser J. Philosophy: a Historical Survey with Essential Readings. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Education, 2019. 426 p.

Further reading

1. Brāzma G. Bioētika. Jelgava: LLU, 2010. 128 lpp.
2. Zinātnes filozofija. G.Brāzma, I.Leikuma, L.Leikums, K.Lūsis, G.Moskvins. Jelgava: LLU, 2011. 174 lpp.
3. Blekbērns S. Domā! Neatvairāms ievads filozofijā. Rīga: ¼ Satori, 2007. 304 lpp.

Periodicals and other sources

1. Žurnāls Rīgas Laiks. ISSN 1407-1622.
2. Žurnāls Philosophy now: a magazine of ideas. ISSN 0961-5970. Pieejams:
3. Online encyclopedia Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Pieejams:


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