Philosophical Ethics

An Introduction to Moral Philosophy

About the Course

Philosophical Ethics: An Introduction to Moral Philosophy is a four-week course exploring theories of right and wrong.

Are you ever justified in killing an innocent person for the greater good? If your friend is secretly cheating on their spouse, do you have an obligation to keep your friend’s secret, or an obligation to tell the spouse the truth? Must you treat everyone equally, or can you show special concern for your loved ones?

When facing these kinds of dilemmas, we all have an intuitive sense of right and wrong. But can we formulate these intuitions into a more robust moral theory? The history of Western philosophy offers three main types of such theories: Consequentialism, deontology, and virtue ethics.

In this 4-week course, we’ll dive deep into morality. We’ll examine what these theories are and the reasons for believing (or disbelieving) them. And in the fourth week, we’ll go meta and consider whether these theories are objectively true, culturally relative, or something else entirely.

By the end of this short course, you’ll be equipped with a more robust framework for answering life’s most important questions.

About the Course

Philosophical Ethics: An Introduction to Moral Philosophy is a four-week course exploring theories of right and wrong.

Are you ever justified in killing an innocent person for the greater good? If your friend is secretly cheating on their spouse, do you have an obligation to keep your friend’s secret, or an obligation to tell the spouse the truth? Must you treat everyone equally, or can you show special concern for your loved ones?

When facing these kinds of dilemmas, we all have an intuitive sense of right and wrong. But can we formulate these intuitions into a more robust moral theory? The history of Western philosophy offers three main types of such theories: Consequentialism, deontology, and virtue ethics.

In this 4-week course, we’ll dive deep into morality. We’ll examine what these theories are and the reasons for believing (or disbelieving) them. And in the fourth week, we’ll go meta and consider whether these theories are objectively true, culturally relative, or something else entirely.

By the end of this short course, you’ll be equipped with a more robust framework for answering life’s most important questions.

About your instructor

Dr Sebastian Sequoiah-Grayson

Dr Sebastian Sequoiah-Grayson is a philosopher with research interests in formal epistemology, philosophical logic, philosophy of information, and philosophy of music. He has been a Senior Research Fellow at the Department of Computer Science at the University of Oxford, a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Oxford, and held numerous other academic positions.

Course structure

The course consists of four 90-minute classes and takes place in our virtual classroom over Zoom.

It is a live and interactive course, which features:

  • Assigned readings,
  • Live lectures,
  • Live Q&A sessions with the instructor,
  • and Zoom breakout rooms with your intellectually curious classmates.

Discussion spaces are available via private Facebook groups.

To maintain an optimal learning environment, classes are kept small — so be quick in securing your spot!

What You'll Learn

Normative Ethics

Theories of right and wrong.

Meta-Ethics

Whether those theories are objective, subjective, or something else.

Systematic Philosophy

How to use philosophical tools to have more fruitful moral disagreements.

Course dates

March 2022

Class Dates

All classes run from 6.00 PM AEDT to 7.30 PM AEDT
• Week 1: Thu 3 March, 2022
• Week 2: Thu 10 March, 2022
• Week 3: Thu 17 March, 2022
• Week 4: Thu 24 March, 2022

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May 2022

Class Dates

All classes run from 7.00 PM AEST to 8.30 PM AEST
• Week 1: Wed 4 May, 2022
• Week 2: Wed 11 May, 2022
• Week 3: Wed 18 May, 2022
• Week 4: Wed 25 May, 2022

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