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Dec 2nd 2016

Intellectual Humility: Theory (Coursera)

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Faced with difficult questions people often tend to dismiss and marginalize dissent. Political and moral disagreements can be incredibly polarizing, and sometimes even dangerous. And whether it’s Christian fundamentalism, Islamic extremism, or militant atheism, religious dialogue remains tinted by arrogance, dogma, and ignorance. The world needs more people who are sensitive to reasons both for and against their beliefs, and are willing to consider the possibility that their political, religious and moral beliefs might be mistaken. The world needs more intellectual humility.

But what is intellectual humility, anyway? And why do people seem so drawn toward intellectual arrogance? Psychologists, philosophers, theologians, and educationalists are now suggesting some answers.

In this course we try to define intellectual humility and intellectual virtues in general, and ask how we know who is humble. All lectures are delivered by leading specialists, and the course is organised around a number of interesting readings and practical assignments which will help you address issues related to humility in your daily life.

This course is a part of a series which explores the theory, the science and the applied issues surrounding intellectual humility (the latter two coming in June and November 2017). Completing all three courses will give you a broader understanding of this fascinating topic.
Who is this class for: This class can be taken by learners at all levels, and should be easy to understand for 1st and 2nd year undergraduate students. The materials will be divided into three tiers, allowing you to choose how much you want to engage with the topic. At the Learn level, you will watch videos and complete quizzes. At the Engage level, you will be asked to do some background reading, answer reflective questions and participate in discussions. At the Go Further! level you will be invited to complete more creative tasks and presented with a range of further readings. You can choose how you want to engage with the course and each particular module, and can mix things to best suit your learning style.