spring 2024
SVF-8600 Philosophy and Ethics of Science - 6 ECTS

Type of course

This course cannot be taken as a singular course. This course is recommended as part of the compulsory credits in philosophy of science and research ethics within the instruction component of the PhD programs in natural and social sciences.

Admission requirements

The course is open for UiT students admitted to a PhD program. Priority will be given to PhD students from the BFE faculty, PhD students from the NT faculty, PhD students from other faculties at UiT, and PhD students from UNIS. The number of participants is limited to 60.

Contact Ingjerd Gauslaa Nilsen (ingjerd.nilsen@uit.no) at the BFE-faculty if you have any questions regarding course registration or other queries.

Course overlap

If you pass the examination in this course, you will get an reduction in credits (as stated below), if you previously have passed the following courses:

BIO-8603 Philosophy of science and ethics 6 ects
HEL-8010 Research Ethics and Theory of Science 3 ects
SVF-8054 Theory of Science 7 ects
SVF-8038 Research Ethics 3 ects
HEL-8040 Theory of science, research ethics and research design 3 ects

Course content

The course aims to introduce PhD students to core issues connecting philosophy of science and research ethics. The course explains different concepts and positions regarding the nature of the scientific method, modelling, causality, the role of science and technology in society, diversity, ethical theories, as well as the ethical responsibilities of scientists in knowledge production, dissemination, and reception.

Objectives of the course

Upon completion of the course, the PhD candidates will have developed


  • knowledge of the philosophy of science, such as the demarcation problem, the debate among competing accounts of the scientific method, the problem of induction, and the concepts of paradigms and scientific revolutions
  • substantial insight in how to apply principles of research ethics and understand the idea of integrity
  • understanding of the role and place of science and technology in modern societies, including epistemological and ethical challenges
  • knowledge of fundamental concepts and theories from philosophy of science and ethics
  • understanding of the contemporary debates about the nature and role of science in academia and society


the ability to

  • apply fundamental ethical principles in guidelines and legislation, including issues of research integrity, and avoiding misconducts
  • promote equality and diversity, in words, actions, and conduct, across disciplines and sectors
  • communicate key philosophical and ethical concepts and engage in contemporary debates about the nature and role of science
  • see their own research in a wider perspective, and creatively reflect upon the basic assumptions and challenges of their research projects

General competences:

the ability to

  • apply knowledge and skills above to carry out advanced assignments on philosophy and/or ethics of science, relevant to their research practice and field
  • communicate and cooperate with scientists/researchers from other fields with a clear and understandable language.

Language of instruction and examination


Teaching methods

Teaching runs as an intensive course over two weeks with 20 hours of lectures and 12 hours of group discussions and seminars. Course dates: 05.02.24-16.02.24.



Examination: Grade scale:
Assignment Passed / Not Passed

Coursework requirements:

To take an examination, the student must have passed the following coursework requirements:

Participation and attendance in lectures and seminars Approved – not approved
Pre-assignment Approved – not approved
Title, objective, and outline of essay Approved – not approved
Participation in essay supervision Approved – not approved
UiT Exams homepage

More info about the coursework requirements

The pre-assignment entails a description of yourself and your scientific work, your motivation and expectations for the course. An online form will be distributed to be filled out.

Re-sit examination

There will not be a re-sit exam in this course.
  • About the course
  • Campus: Tromsø |
  • ECTS: 6
  • Course code: SVF-8600
  • Ekstra informasjon
  • Deadline for applying is 15 December.

    Register via Studentweb

  • Tidligere år og semester for dette emnet