2 Universidade Europeia Laureate International Universities & Centre for Research in Higher Education Policies (PORTUGAL)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN18 Proceedings
Publication year: 2018
Pages: 6915-6921
ISBN: 978-84-09-02709-5
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2018.1635
Conference name: 10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2018
Location: Palma, Spain
Considered not only the oldest but also the ‘mother of all sciences’ (Rather, 2004, Hansson, 2008), Philosophy is a discipline which performs a critical examination of fundamental concepts and principles (Findlay, 2005) that structure reality and its different dimensions, questioning the nature of knowledge, truth, ethics or existence. The main competences that Philosophy degrees tend to enhance are the ability to reason effectively and form coherent arguments, to write persuasively or to improve logical and critical thinking. Many disciplines taught currently in higher education follow common understandings and points of reference produced in order to promote quality and convergent learning outcomes across Europe. That is the case of TUNING Educational Structures, a project that links the political objectives of the Bologna Process and of the Lisbon Strategy. Tuning has developed as an approach to (re-)designing, develop, implement, evaluate and enhance quality in degree programmes to assure recognition, focusing on many subject areas. Philosophy is not among those subject areas, although it may be included in humanitarian studies. The HUMART project identify common denominators in the academic sectors of Humanities and the Arts (Tuning 2012). As a result, a Sectoral Qualifications Framework for Humanities & Arts was produced and focused on the 8 dimensions – the Human Being, Cultures and Societies, Texts and Contexts, Theories and Concepts, Interdisciplinary, Communication, Initiative and Creativity, Professional Development – organised according to the categories of Knowledge, Skills and Competence. Based on this theoretical framework, this study aims to analyse how learning outcomes are defined on philosophy programs submitted to quality accreditation by Portuguese Higher Education Institutions, since 2009. Using a qualitative methodology, learning outcomes were semantically analysed, according to a competence matrix. In general, results suggest that philosophy programs reveal a greater prominence on critical thinking (14%), oral and written communication skills (11% and 9%) as well as information management skills (7%). In turn, competences such as decision-making, leadership, team-work, innovation or entrepreneurship are not mentioned as an expected learning outcome to be achieve by philosophy graduates. Some implications to practice need to be debated, comparing these results with the dimensions valued by HUMART project and contributing for understanding what (really) matters in philosophy curriculum.
Philosophy, learning outcomes, competences.