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Course Description

Old parchment with feather pen and ink bottle

This course introduces philosophy through an examination of important issues in politics and society, such as punishment, animal rights, discrimination, war and violence, equality and property. These issues may be introduced through contemporary or historical philosophical writings.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, the learner should be able to:

  1. Explain the canonical tradition of modern political philosophy in their own words
  2. Be able to think critically about political philosophy through critical and logical discussion of current events
  3. Apply course to identify, critically examine and assess social and political issues.
  4. Support their personal views on current Canadian social and political issues based on critical and analytic skills developed throughout the course
  5. In the context of Canadian social and political theory, develop a thesis, state an outline, argue for thesis, and conclude by bringing together the insight of what you have learned

Course Topics

  • Machiavelli
  • Hobbes
  • Locke
  • Rousseau
  • Kant
  • Mill
  • Marx
  • Rawls
  • Nozick
  • Okin
  • Habermas
  • Foucault


Assessment Item Weight  Learning Outcomes
Quizzes (5 @ 10% each) 50% 1-5
Essay (Due on the 10th week of the term) 20% 1, 2, 5
Online Final exam 30% 1-5
Total 100%  



Additional Technical Requirements

This course will use the following:

  • Respondus tool to invigilate one or more exams.

Please view the Technical Considerations for each.


Technical Requirements

You are responsible for ensuring that your computer system meets the necessary system requirements. Use the browser check tool to ensure your browser settings are compatible and up to date (results will be displayed in a new browser window).

*Course details are subject to change.

Enrol Now - Select a section to enrol in
Section Title
Social and Political Issues
January 09, 2023 to April 10, 2023
Contact Hours
Delivery Options
Course Fee(s)
Domestic Tuition Fee (0.5 units) $683.39 Click here to get more information
Domestic Tuition Fee - Non-Ontario (0.5 units) $713.81 Click here to get more information
International Tuition Fee (0.5 units) $3,106.72 Click here to get more information
Available for Credit
0.5 units
Section Notes

Note:  If you are in a degree program at the University of Guelph, please DO NOT register using the link above.  You must register through WebAdvisor.

Section Materials
  • Textbook (Confirmed) (Mandatory) Introduction to Social and Political Philosophy by Edited by Omid Payrow-Shabani and Monique Deveaux © 2014 Oxford University Press Canada ISBN 9780195431315
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