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Free Will V Determinism

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Mark Furnish

on 29 June 2015

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Transcript of Free Will V Determinism

Free Will v Determinism
What do you want to be when you grow up?
Free Will
What is the debate?
Discuss and then write down 2 examples of studies that are determinist and 2 that support free will
Is this your choice?
Are behaviours caused by our
deliberate intentions or are they caused by internal and external events?
Are our lives predetermined and decided for us?
Or are our actions under our
control and we make conscious decisions to behave in a certain way and choose a certain path for ourselves?

In Films
Do you think we control our destiny or do unseen
forces manipulate us? - some people call this fate
Is everything in our control?
If you can identify criminals before
they commit the crimes should
they be locked up?

Types of determinism
Environmental Determinism
Your behaviour is controlled by your environment
Which studies/approaches support the concept of environmental determinism?
Behaviours are determined by your biology
Psychic Determinism - behaviour is controlled by our unconscious
Who is key to
this idea?
A middle ground to each of these explanations is soft determinism.

This says that although as humans we do have choices to make and can exercise free will, these choices are often constrained (or determined) by other external or internal factors.

Soft Determinism
Which studies/approaches that we have studied could be considered
environmental determinism?

Biological Determinism
Smart Board Activity
Explain how a free will view and a deterministic view would explain the findings in Milgram’s experiment on obedience to authority (4)

Describe one piece of research which shows how behaviour might be determined by our environment and one piece of research which shows how behaviour might be determined by our biology (8)

Using examples from research you have studied discuss the strengths and limitations of using a deterministic approach for understanding human behaviour (12)

Possible Exam Questions
If I presented a big red button and you had the 'choice' to push or not what would you do?

There are various questions around the room which relate to the free will determinism debate
I want you to make your way around the room writing your opinion about the issue
You can respond to what has already been said or write something new
This does require some thinking(!) so be careful to read
what's already written and be thoughtful in your
You need to give a rating
1 being pure determinist and 10 being pure
free will, give your rating and justify
Think about the results of studies. If the results were not 100% consistent then maybe there is an element of free will
who we fall in love with
that you came to this college
the grades you get in exams
whether we commit
criminal acts, or not
the music we do/don't like
how sociable we are
Fill in the description box on page 25
Key words/phrases:
free will
types of determinism
how fast we are at running
Is there an element of fate and predictability about the way we will behave in the future?
Use p6-7 from summer reading to help you
1 10

free will
Full transcript