9 Philosophy

Course Description

Teacher in Charge: Mr G. Cass

This is a general introduction to Philosophy.  The idea is to find out about some of the thinkers, ideas, topics and activities that Philosophy is based on, and to answer some intriguing questions.

At TBC Philosophy is offered up to Level 3 NCEA and university level.

Course Overview

Term 1
We look at a different area every week, although the ideas we discuss in one area often start cropping up again in unexpected places. The list below gives an idea of what we will be doing; the order may change, but we will cover each theme during the term.
Each week’s theme tries to connect Philosophy to a subject that students will already have experience of.

Thinking Skills
What does it mean to say you “know” something?
What are “truth”, “proof” and “belief”?

Social and Moral
What types of friendship are there?
What are the limits of friendship?
What responsibilities does friendship impose?

What makes a life ‘good’?
Can we measure the quality of life, and if so how?
Is toleration always right?

Does history follow a pattern?

Should NZ become a republic?
What do people mean by ‘anarchy’?

Is it acceptable to experiment on animals?
How/do humans differ from animals?

Assessment Information

Students are assessed on their ability to discuss ideas their ideas and record them in writing. There is a final written summative assessment as well as a visual task.


Philosophy's main focus is critical thinking and so it is a good supporting subject for any academic career. It is particularly helpful in any field that requires critical analysis of evidence for decision making.

Career Pathways