Philosophy, Science and Society

“Philosophy, Science and Society” is one of four courses in the General Education Program forming the ideology/national education component required for higher education curriculum as directed by the Ministry of Education & Training, Socialist Republic of Vietnam. These four courses are written to achieve the primary objective of helping students understand the core values of both country and university through objective and critical academic lenses in a global context. As these courses will be taught in English to students for whom English is mainly a second language at VinUniversity, each course is designed to be delivered in the spirit of a content-based language learning approach to help students both develop English language competency (focusing on speaking, listening, and reading) and basic understanding of the content. Philosophy, Science & Society (PSS) provides students with a broad survey of key ideas in Philosophy, its relevance to society and the way we think we understand the world, or to put it broadly, “science.”

We begin the course with an overview of the role of Philosophy and Metaphysics as we embark on this journey of critically re-examining the way we look at our world. In the second part of the course, we take a deep dive into questions of Epistemology, based on which students can orient and develop their creative thinking, philosophy of humanity and action. We follow up with an exploration of trends that came into being with the “social turn” of epistemology found in the critical works of Thomas Kuhn and later in the burgeoning body of works clustered as Sociology of Science. Following this radical re-thinking, we return to the fundamental questions about humanity posed in Social Philosophy and Ethics, to round up our critical inquiry into the complex relationship among philosophy, science, and society.