Friday, August 13, 2010

Call for Proposals: Teaching Philosophy Session at Central APA, 2011

The APA Committee on Teaching Philosophy is seeking proposals for a panel session at the APA Central Division Meeting, March 30-April 2, 2011, Minneapolis, MN on this topic:

“Does It Matter What I do? Student Engagement, Social Change and Teaching”

There are many ethical and social issues for which collective action would be required to prevent a significant harm or ameliorate an injustice. Some people (i.e., students) respond with despair to such situations, believing that it doesn't ‘matter’ what they do since their individual actions seem insignificant in the grand scheme of things. Others respond that they can make a difference, that what they do ‘matters.’ These issues raise some of the following concerns for philosophy teachers:

  • Philosophical issues: what’s the most reasonable response to arguments for and against personal obligations in cases requiring collective action?
  • Philosophy of education: what role should philosophy teaching play in contributing to social change and students’ social engagement?
  • Psychological issues: why are some people “optimistic” and others “pessimistic” here? What are the psychological (and sociological) influences?
  • Pedagogical issues: How do different teaching techniques influence students’ responses to such issues? E.g., does "service learning" or "community outreach" make a difference?

The Committee is seeking a panel of instructors to address these and related issues in teaching philosophy. Please submit a half to one page proposal by September, 15, 2010 to Nathan Nobis, Morehouse College,

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