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HiL > 2008/09 Studiehåndbok > Ex. fac. II. Specialisation in the Social sciences' Philosophy of science

Ex. fac. II. Specialisation in the Social sciences' Philosophy of science
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Norsk (Bokmål)English
Antall studenter
Trond Jakobsen
Karakter A-F
Telefon: 612 88000

Central topics:

  1. Development of The social sciences/The positivism conflict/The relationship Natural/Social science
  2. Models of Human and Society/Rational Players/Deterministic Models/Biologic Models/Social Models
  3. The social sciences' theory of science/Philosophy
  4. Society and Rationality/Weber's Rationality types/Hermeneutics and Rationality
  5. Research arrangement/Qualitative Method/Quantitative Method/Philosophical Approach
  6. Methodological Individualism/Methodological Collectivism/Functionalism
  7. Researcher and Research arrangements/Participant and Spectator/Double hermeneutics
  8. The social sciences and Society
  9. Normative Argumentation/Value argumentation on Society and Social conditions
  10. Value freedom/The science's Ethos and Research ethics

The purpose of the course is to bring further the problems thatwere discussed in Ex.fac. 1. Common course to a further specialisation in the social sciences' philosophy of science (Ex.fac. 2S). Here there will be focus on a more thorough introduction to the social sciences' development, history and present time. The positivism conflict as it was expressed in the social sciences will be emphasised. This is to illustrate some of the problems that spring from the theory on " the unity of sciences" that arises in connection with the understanding of the social sciences e.g. in relation to science in general. Furthermore, there will be a focus on introducing different human models and social models that are/have been of current interest in the social sciences. The social sciences' special philosophy of science/philosophy will then be discussed and prepared among other things according to the above-mentioned problems. Weber's rationality types and "the translatability problem" especially related to different social-scientific explanation types will further be developed in more detail. Methodological individualism and collectivism are prepared in relation to the above-mentioned. Problems related to hermeneutic research, double hermeneutics, spectator and participant will also be central. Furthermore, the students will get a more thorough introduction to quantitative and qualitative method perspectives and their meaning for different research arrangements in the social sciences. A philosophical evaluation of these will be given. The social sciences' place in the wider society will be problemised and discussed. Since normative argumentation is important in connection with the use of social-scientific knowledge and research in politics and in other areas, different models for this type of argumentation and their reason will be prepared. The course is completed by emphasising the value freedom thesis, the science' ethos and the different ethical problems and dilemmas that may arise in connection with research on people and the society.


The goal for the course is:

1) to make the students aware of the special conditions that characterise the scientific status of the social sciences

2) to make the students familiar with the special theories and concepts that are/may be effective in social-scientific research

3) to make the students aware of what sort of methods that are effective in social-scientific research and the conditions and problems that are attached to these methods

4) to make the students capable of seeing the meaning of social-scientific research in society

5) to make the students aware of the ethical problems and dilemmas that arise in connection with social-scientific research.

Undervisnings- og læringsmetode

6 lectures of 4 hours and 6 group works of 2 hours.


Ex. phil. and Ex. fac. I.

Emne er obligatorisk for

Bachelor i samfunnsfag,


One assignment that is evaluated as passed/failed. The assignment must be approved in order to sit for the examination.


Individual written examination of 3 hours.

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