Student Pages
Undergraduate course

Introduction to Ethics

Main content

Level of Study


Teaching semester


Objectives and Content

Students will gain knowledge of some of the key questions and issues being studied in modern ethics. Some examples of topics that will be treated are: justice, welfare, what morality demands, the value of life, moral duty and the moral ideal. In addition, the course will look at applied topics related to life and death, the environment and global ethical challenges. The course is intended for all students who need to strengthen their expertise in ethics. It will be relevant to students in environmental sciences, social sciences and economics, as well as for students in the law and medicine.

Learning Outcomes


After completing the course, the student should have:

  • An overview of some central themes and debates in contemporary ethics and moral philosophy
  • A familiarity with key theories and scholarly literature related to these themes and debates
  • An understanding of concepts and arguments relevant to these themes and debates
  • An understanding of how these themes and debates connect to each other and to current ethical and social issues.


After completing the course, the student should be able to:

  • Describe key concepts, positions, theories, and traditions in ethics and moral philosophy
  • Recognize the role these concepts, positions, theories, and traditions play in scholarly and public debates
  • Reconstruct and evaluate arguments advanced in support of different positions or theories in ethics and moral philosophy
  • Recognize practical implications of theoretical positions
  • Reflect on, and form well-reasoned judgements about themes and debates in ethics and moral philosophy
  • Communicate understanding and ideas related to the course content both orally and in writing.


After completing the course, the student should be competent to:

  • Participate in scholarly debates in ethics and moral philosophy
  • Contribute philosophical insights to public debates about ethical and social issues
  • Study ethics and moral philosophy at an advanced bachelor level.

Recommended Previous Knowledge

Approved first semester studies. A good proficiency in English is necessary since it ought to be assumed that much of the prescribed reading will be in English.

Teaching and learning methods

Students will spend approximately 20 hours in class over the course of the semester, and approximately 10 hours per week outside of class working on course-related tasks. Class time will involve lectures or presentations by the instructor, discussions, and group work.

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

Students must complete at least 7 formative assignments (around 500 words each). Deadlines are set by the department.

Forms of Assessment

A 4-day Home examination of 3000- 5000 words (not including table of contents, list of references etc.). The paper should be submitted electronically.

The compulsory activities have to be formally approved before one can take an exam in the course.

Grading Scale

From A to F

Course Evaluation

The teaching will be evaluated in every semester it is taught


Department of Philosophy

Email: studierettleiar@fof.uib.no

Exam information

  • Type of assessment: Take-home examination

    Assignment handed out
    07.11.2022, 09:00
    Submission deadline
    10.11.2022, 16:00
    Withdrawal deadline
    Examination system
    Digital exam