Freedom of Action

7.5 credits

Syllabus, Master's level, 5FP119

Education cycle
Second cycle
Main field(s) of study and in-depth level
Practical Philosophy A1N
Grading system
Fail (U), Pass (G), Pass with distinction (VG)
Finalised by
The Department Board, 29 February 2024
Responsible department
Department of Philosophy

Entry requirements

120 credits, or equivalent, including 60 credits in philosophy, aesthetics, musicology, literature or art history. Proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6.

Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students should:

  • have an overview of some of the main debates on freedom of action
  • be able to describe the most important theories in these debates
  • be able to describe the most important arguments for and against these theories
  • be able to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of these arguments.


The question of whether we have freedom of action is one of the most widely discussed in contemporary philosophy. This course provides an introduction to some of the central issues in the debate. Topics covered include: How are we to understand the concept of freedom of action? Is freedom of action compatible with determinism? Is freedom of action possible in an indeterministic universe? Does moral responsibility require freedom of action?


Lectures and seminars.


One longer home essay of about 3500 words, two shorter writing assignments and mandatory participation at the seminars. A student's active participation and good performance in class may be a positive factor in the overall assessment of the student's work for the course.

If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the University's disability coordinator.

No reading list found.