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Durham University

Postgraduate Module Handbook 2021/2022

Archive Module Description

This page is for the academic year 2021-22. The current handbook year is 2022-23
No such Code for pgprog: N2I101
No such Code for pgprog: N5I101

Department: Management and Marketing

BUSI4H815: Logic and Argumentation in the Social Sciences

Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Not available in 2021/22
Tied to N2I101
Tied to N5I101

Prerequisites

  • None

Corequisites

  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None

Aims

  • The module offers an overview of some logical models offered in the social sciences in the course of the last two decades. Instead of making the overview comprehensive, the module focuses on a hands on approach, discussing in details what made these models desirable, what (meta-) features are unavoidable, what are only convenient, what have these models achieved and what are the remaining deficiencies. In short, it aims to teach how to construct and improve such models, and when to abandon them.

Content

  • (1) Classical Propositional Logic
  • (2) More classical First Order Logic
  • (3) Models for non-monotonic reasoning 1 (propositional)
  • (4) Models for non-monotonic reasoning 2 (first order)
  • (5) Modal Models 1 Facts, Perception and Taken-for-grantedness
  • (6) Modal Models 2 Typecasting
  • (7) Analytical models (What happens ultimately?)
  • (8) Probabilistic models and induction

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Have advanced knowledge of logic and argumentation in social sciences;
  • Have advanced knowledge of what made classic models in social sciences desirable, what (meta-) features are unavoidable, what are only convenient, what have these models achieved and what are their remaining deficiencies.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Have a comprehensive understanding of how to construct and improve models in social science, and understand when to abandon them;
  • Have advanced skills and ability to theorize in the social sciences.
Key Skills:
  • The ability to carefully and critically evaluate models in the social sciences;
  • The ability to carefully craft and theorize models in the social sciences.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The module will be delivered in a series of 8 hybrid lecture-seminars over term one.
  • By commenting on each other’s suggestions students will acquire both the capability and the attitude to critically evaluate and improve their research.
  • Learning will also occur through tutor-supported classrooms and through self-support learning groups, thus enabling students to develop their own effective research strategies and critical evaluation skills.
  • Formative assessment is by a 1,000 word document outlining aspects of strength and weakness of a particular theory in a relevant field to the student’s programme of study.
  • Summative assessment of the module is by a 3,000 word written assignment assessing a chosen theory in a field relevant to the student.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Hybrid lecture-seminars 8 Weekly 3hours 24
Self-supported learning groups (students are expected to form their own discussion groups to reflect on and share their learning about the issues raised in the module) 8 Weekly 1 hour 8
Independent study, preparation and reading 118
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Written Assignment Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Individual written assignment 3,000 words 100% same

Formative Assessment:

Students will be required to submit a 1,000 word document outlining aspects of strength and weakness of a particular theory in a relevant field to the student’s programme of study.


Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University