Philosophy Of Mathematics PHIL4029

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: School of Humanities
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

This course introduces students to the principal philosophical approaches to the nature of mathematics and mathematical knowledge.

Timetable

16x1hr lectures; 4x1hr seminars over 10 weeks as scheduled on MyCampus. This is one of the Honours options in Philosophy and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus.

Requirements of Entry

Available to all students fulfilling requirements for Honours entry into Philosophy, and by arrangement to visiting students or students of other Honours programmes.

Excluded Courses

None

Co-requisites

None

Assessment

Exam (2 hour duration) - 60%

Essay (2000 words) - 40%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

This course aims to:

 

■ Introduce students to the principal philosophical approaches to the nature of mathematics and mathematical knowledge.

■ Explain the philosophical significance of some major results in the foundations of mathematics.

■ Introduce students to the main positions which constitute the focus of recent and currently active debate in the Philosophy of Mathematics.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

 

■ Formulate and discuss central epistemological and ontological questions concerning the nature of mathematics;

■ Explain and critically assess Frege's logicism;

■ Explain the significance of the paradoxes of set theory for the logicist programme;

■ Explain and critically assess Whitehead and Russell's Logicism;

■ Explain Hilbert's Programme;

■ Explain and critically assess modern positions in the philosophy of mathematics, including structuralism, mathematical empiricism, nominalism and neo-logicism.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.