• Offered by School of Politics and International Relations
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Course subject Political Science
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • Prof Keith Dowding
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Second Semester 2014
    See Future Offerings

Each week the students will be set an issue that is a problem or problem in politics, philosophy or economics.  The precise topics will vary from year to year; and many topics will be split into component parts and split over several weeks. 

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

By the end of this course you should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate a working knowledge of key terms, concepts and ideas in the study of PPE
  2. Demonstrate an ability to think about and discuss puzzles in the social sciences. 
  3. Demonstrate an ability to apply the skills learned on the course to new areas.
  4. Prepare materials on a topic relevant to PPE and present them in a focused manner to the group
  5. Think, write and argue about issues demonstrating a full understanding of the issue.

Indicative Assessment

Formative assessment will be conducted by giving the students some of the problems we have studied and they will be asked to describe them and potential solutions midway through the course, plus a 2000 word essay set after 4 sessions

Marked presentation (10%) (LO 1-2, 4)  For group presentations those involved in the presentation will mark each others contribution and individual marks will be assigned by the course convener taking those marks into consideration as appropriate. 

Assessed essay 40% (LO1-3, 5).  Examination 50% (LO 1-3, 5) The examination is sit down.

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


All students will be expected to prepare for each seminar having read the set reading for that session.  Each session a group will present the problem or puzzle to be addressed and all students will be expected to join in the discussion.  The contact will be equivalent to two hours per session (12 sessions) over the semester.  Students will be expected to spend eight hours per session on average preparing for seminars and preparing their presentation.   

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must have enrolled in Bachelor of Politics, Philosphy and Economics

Prescribed Texts

Brams, Steven J. and Taylor. Aland D. 1996. Fair Division: From Cake-Cutting to Dispute Resolution. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Dowding, Keith. 2009. "What is Welfare and How Can We Measure It." Pp. 511-539 in The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Economics, edited by H. Kincaid and D. Ross. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Grofman, Bernard, Guillermo Owen, and Scott A. Feld. 1983. "Thirteen Theorems in Search of the Truth." Theory and Decision 15:261-278.

List, Christian and Philip Pettit. 2002. "Aggregating Sets of Judgements: An Impossibility Result." Economics and Philosophy 18:89-110.

Nurmi, Hannu. 1999. Voting Paradoxes and How to Deal with Them. Berlin: Springer-Verlag.

Olson, Mancur. 1965/1971. The Logic of Collective Action: Public Goods and the Theory of Groups. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.

Parfit, Derek. 1984. Reasons and Persons. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Riker, William H. and Peter C. Ordeshook. 1968. "A Theory of the Calculus of Voting." American Political Science Review 62:25-43



Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Students continuing in their current program of study will have their tuition fees indexed annually from the year in which you commenced your program. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee Description
1994-2003 $1164
2014 $2478
2013 $2472
2012 $2472
2011 $2424
2010 $2358
2009 $2286
2008 $2286
2007 $2286
2006 $2286
2005 $2286
2004 $1926
International fee paying students
Year Fee
1994-2003 $2574
2014 $3246
2013 $3240
2012 $3240
2011 $3240
2010 $3240
2009 $3240
2008 $3240
2007 $3132
2006 $3132
2005 $3132
2004 $2916
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
8648 21 Jul 2014 01 Aug 2014 31 Aug 2014 30 Oct 2014 In Person N/A

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