2023-2024 / PHIL0214-2

Philosophy of mind


30h Th

Number of credits

 Master in philosophy (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in philosophy (60 ECTS)5 crédits 


Arnaud Dewalque

Language(s) of instruction

French language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the first semester, review in January


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

The course is based on the critical analysis of a work of philosophy of mind. The work on the 2023-24 syllabus is Franz Brentano's Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint. Although not strictly speaking part of the field of analytic philosophy of mind, this path-breaking work opened up important research perspectives that are still being exploited today. Particular attention will be paid to the critical discussion of Brentano's theses and arguments, as well as their reception.

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

By the end of the course, (i) you will have strengthened your ability to analyse a philosophical text, critically evaluate a philosophical argument, develop your own philosophical ideas and actively engage in philosophical discussion; (ii) you will appreciate the importance of philosophical debates surrounding the foundations of psychology and the understanding of human mind.

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

Bachelor in Philosophy.

Understanding of written and spoken English is required.

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

Each class will be based upon the required reading for the session (see schedule) and will be structured as follows:

  • Contextualization in the philosophical debate
  • Reconstruction of the author's claims and arguments in the chapter
  • Critical discussion.
Active participation is expected. It includes:

  • Participation during the sessions
  • Doing the required reading for every session
  • Handing in one's work in time

Mode of delivery (face to face, distance learning, hybrid learning)

Face-to-face course

Recommended or required readings


Franz Brentano, Psychologie du point de vue empirique, trad. fr. M. de Gandillac, revue par J.-F. Courtine, Paris, Vrin, 2008 (édition allemande originale : Psychologie vom empirischen Standpunkte (PES), Leipzig, Duncker & Humblot, 1874 ; 1911 ; rééditions : Hamburg, Meiner, 1924 ; Sämtliche veröffentlichte Schriften, Bd. 1, Frankfurt, Ontos Verlag, 2008).

English edition: Franz Brentano, Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint, London, Routledge, 1995, reed. 2015.

A list of bibliographic resources is made available at the end of the "course plan" (downloadable below or in the "course support" tab).

Exam(s) in session

Any session

- In-person

written exam ( open-ended questions )

Written work / report

Continuous assessment

Additional information:

Assessment components

Final grade = attendance (compulsory, not graded, 0%) + first essay (draft, 30%) + second essay (final version, 70%).

Class participation

Students are expected to participate actively in class discussions, which implies (i) being present at each class session and (ii) reading each article/chapter before the session to which it is associated.


For essays, a list of topics will be provided. I have very specific criteria for how an essay should be written. They are specified in the document entitled "How to write a decent paper in philosophy" (available under the "course support" tab). Assessment criteria are: (i) understanding of the subject matter, (ii) rigourous argumentation, (iii) clarity and quality of language. Deadlines: see schedule.

Work placement(s)

Organisational remarks and main changes to the course

THIS COURSE WILL NOT BE ORGANIZED IN 2024-2025. First-year students who whish to include this course in their Master program are therefore kindly invited to enroll for this course this academic year.

Course schedule: see syllabus.


Arnaud Dewalque
Dpt of Philosophy
7, Place du 20-août, Building A1/2nd floor
B-4000 Liège
email: a.dewalque@uliege.be 

Association of one or more MOOCs

Items online

Syllabus (description, schedule, assessment modalities)
Syllabus (description, schedule, assessment modalities)