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Warwick University Philosophy A Level Conference

Felix Talk 1

Philosophy From and Beyond the Curriculum

On Thursday 29 June, The Philosophy Department hosted its first campus based philosophy conference for A Level students, featuring lectures by Professor Quassim Cassam, Professor Kimberly Brownlee and Dr John Tillson.

54 students and 9 staff attended from 6 schools: Birmingham Metropolitan College, Bluecoat school, Bordesley Green Girls' School, Finham Park School, King Edward VI Aston School, Stratford Girls School.

Quassim Cassam kimbtillson

Morning: Philosophy and Ethics from the Curriculum

09:30 – 10:05 (35): lecture by Dr John Tillson: ‘Free Will and the Problem of Evil’

10:10 – 10:35 (25): breakout discussions

*comfort break*

10:50 – 11:25 (35): lecture by Professor Kimberly Brownlee: 'Virtue Ethics'

11:30 – 11:55 (25): breakout discussions

12:00 – 13:00 lunch

Afternoon: Philosophy Beyond the curriculum

13:00 – 13:50: workshops led undergraduate facilitators

Harry Andrews: what makes art, art? (Aesthetics) | Phoebe Murphy-Dunn: is photography an art? (Aesthetics) | Heidi Selwood: what makes me, me? (Metaphysics) | Kiran Lloyd: does distance make a (moral) difference? (Ethics) | Joseph Phillips: is the will free? (Metaphysics) | Alex Green: how can we tell memory from imagination? (Mind)

14:00 – 14:50: keynote address by Professor Quassim Cassam: 'The Problem of Disappearing Knowledge'.

14:50 – 15:00: Farewell


The teachers who attended the event had the following to say:

“Just wanted to say thank you for yesterday. The lectures and student workshops were excellent and all our students and staff enjoyed them.”

– Shabana Pervez, Bordesley Green

“Thanks for the great event today. My students really enjoyed it and were full of discussion and debate the whole bus home. Thanks to the undergrads and speakers too!”

– Dr. Daniel McKee, King Edward VI Aston School

“Thank you again very much for a really varied and memorable day conference. The students all enjoyed it so much – the lectures and the bits which were ‘off-topic’. It stimulated their thinking and made them aware of the broad range of philosophy, especially when delivered by enthusiastic people not much older than they are. A really well-constructed programme.”

– Catherine Kendall, Finham Park

“On behalf of Birmingham Metropolitan College I would like to thank you for a very enjoyable and insightful day. It was well organised and engaging and my students had a wonderful time (as did the staff). They were certainly inspired by the event and listening to some of the conversations on the minibus on the way home it was apparent the day had influenced their choices for undergraduate study. They were keen to research some of the topics discussed during the Summer break.”

– Sally Latham, Birmingham Metropolitan College

“It was wonderful and our students got so much out of it. The lectures and mini seminars were great and pitched perfectly – our students loved it.”

– Marianne Howe, Blue Coat School

“Just a quick word of thanks for the excellent day you put on for our Year 12 girls last Thursday. They (and we) thoroughly enjoyed the lectures and the lovely lunch. It was a fantastic opportunity for these girls to think more deeply about a range of topics and to gain some experience of university at a time when they are making important decisions about their futures [...]

I hope that you will be doing more days like this in the future and that we will be invited.”

– Karen Steele, Stratford Girls' Grammar School