Student Learning Outcomes

Narrative

The principal aim of this course is to afford the student a basic orientation to the philosophical study of the law, and an introduction to some of the main problem areas that interest legal theorists and philosophers working in the field today. While these problems and others like them do provide excellent material for training one's critical thinking faculties, they are not just academic exercises. The impact of the law on our individual and collective lives is immense. This makes time spent contemplating the issues that give life to the philosophical study of the law well worth the effort for those who wish to think in a deep and organized way about the forces that shape our social interactions more broadly. A student who successfully completes the course requirements will thus achieve broad familiarity with the principal concepts and approaches employed in one of the most important philosophical problem areas encountered by thinking people in a diverse culture.


Course Learning Outcomes

The successful student in this course:

1. Will show an understanding and appreciation for the difference between analytic and normative jurisprudence.

This outcome is measured by performance on the first of the two Papers, and by performance in class Debates

2. Will demonstrate the ability to think through, critically, at least one special problem area in the philosophy of law (e.g. punishment, constitutional interpretation, international law and human rights, etc.—see the Course Plan and Assignment Schedule for more detail.

This outcome is measured by performance on the second of the two Papers, and by performance in class Debates


Institutional Learning Outcomes

The successful student in this course:

1. Will use effective written, oral, visual, and artistic expression to communicate and collaborate with others. (Communicate Effectively).

This outcome is measured as a component of daily Participation, performance on Assignments and Papers, and by performance in class Debates

2. Will use both intellectually disciplined and innovative strategies to collect and assess information and form judgments as a guide to belief and action. (Think Critically and Creatively)

This outcome is also measured as a component of daily Participation, as well as by performance on Assignments, Papers and by performance in class Debates

Urban Leadership Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the term, the successful student in this course will have:

4. demonstrated systems thinking in the Term Paper by applying the concepts and methods of social and political philosophy to theorizing about social and political questions in contemporary urban contexts.
5. actively and regularly practiced civility in class discussions and collaborative group work.
6. actively and regularly practiced collaboration both in small groups and as a class in order to realize the objectives of the course.
7. actively and regularly practiced stewardship by taking responsibility for and executing daily class preparation.
8. demonstrated awareness of civic engagement, as represented by the application of moral and political philosophical concepts to concrete problems of urban life.

Outcomes 4 and 8 are measured by performance on Papers. Outcome 7 is measured by Assignments and Participation. Outcomes 5 and 6 are measured by Participation and Group Work.

Disclaimer: The professor will, of course, endeavor to help students achieve these outcomes, but real learning requires substantial effort on the part of the student. Students should therefore not expect to achieve these outcomes without engaging in the sustained, conscientious study and actual work necessary to complete all the class requirements at an adequate or better level and to observe all course policies.

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