Course: Methodology and philosophy of social sciences

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Course title Methodology and philosophy of social sciences
Course code KSV/MEFI
Organizational form of instruction Lecture + Seminary
Level of course Bachelor
Year of study not specified
Semester Summer
Number of ECTS credits 6
Language of instruction Czech
Status of course Compulsory
Form of instruction Face-to-face
Work placements This is not an internship
Recommended optional programme components None
  • Retka Tomáš, Mgr.
  • Horálek Adam, PhDr. Ph.D.
Course content
Lectures: The core text and outline of lectures is the book by B. Fajkus Philosophy and Methodology of Science. Major topics we will discuss are: 1) Philosophy, science and society 2) Neopositivist approach to science and philosophy 3) Falsification model of science by K. R. Popper 4) Logic-reconstructionist theory of philosophy of science 5) Historical and holistic concept of evolution of the science by T. Kuhn 6) Methodology of scientific research programs by I. Lakatos 7) New concepts of philosophy of science in 20th Century 8) methodology of anarchism of Feyerabend 9) Sociological shift in philosophy of science and postmodernism 10) Realism and scientific knowledge 11) Topic of truth in philosophy of science 12) Mems, social learning and cultural evolution 13) Science, values and ethic norms and scientific rationality Seminars: Selected readings will be availabl in STAG in advance prior to the seminars. 1) Is it possible to discover a truth? 2) Is it possible to create general laws? 3) Is it possible to understand people only by observation? 4) Is it possible to get some information from people? 5) Is it possible to understand people? 6) Is it possible to understand correctly people? 7) Is it possible to find out a consensus in social sciences?

Learning activities and teaching methods
Monologic (reading, lecture, briefing), Dialogic (discussion, interview, brainstorming), Work with text (with textbook, with book), Stimulating activities (simulation, games, drama)
  • unspecified - 40 hours per semester
  • unspecified - 64 hours per semester
  • unspecified - 30 hours per semester
  • unspecified - 10 hours per semester
  • unspecified - 36 hours per semester
Learning outcomes

Students will learn to think like social scientists and acquire understanding of the principles, possibilities and limitations, ends and purposes of the social sciences. They will also learn to interpret social scientific and philosophical texts as well as to present and discuss their interpretations.
The students are expected to be trained in the courses USA and TEDA and their knowledge from these courses are prerequisits for successful compleition of the course.

Assessment methods and criteria
Written examination, Home assignment evaluation, Student performance assessment

The course ends with seminar credits and written exam. To get the credits is prereqisition for exam. Seminar: 1. active presence at seminars 2. essay 3. homework 4. test - min. 75 % credits Exam: 1. credits from the seminar 2. oral exam 3. Presence at lectures is NOT required. 4. There will be 5 partial short tests based on the reading of B. Fajkus for respective lecture. Each partial test will be credited up to 2 points. Alltogether student can achieve up to 10 points extra before the final test. These points are included in the final score. Tests and respective reading will be announced in advance of one lecture. Each partial test will take 3-5 minutes. Classification: 100-95,5 p. - 1 95-90,5 p. - 1- 90-85,5 p. - 2 85-80,5 p. - 2- 80-75,0 p. - 3 74,5 and less - 4
Recommended literature
  • Fay, Brian. Současná filosofie sociálních věd : multikulturní přístup. Praha: Sociologické nakladatelství, 2002. ISBN 80-86429-10-5.

Study plans that include the course
Faculty Study plan (Version) Branch of study Category Recommended year of study Recommended semester
Faculty of Arts and Philosophy Social Anthropology (2015) Social sciences 1 Summer
Faculty of Arts and Philosophy Social Anthropology (2013) Social sciences 1 Summer