GEO-23806 Philosophy of Science & Ethics in Tourism


Studiepunten 6.00

Individual Paper1
Course coordinator(s)MSc CC Lin
Lecturer(s)MSc CC Lin
Examiner(s)dr. ir. CPG Driessen

Language of instruction:



Note: This course is part of the BSc Tourism, a joint degree programme of Wageningen University and Breda University of Applied Sciences. This course is open to students from other programmes. The course is not delivered at Wageningen University, however, but at Breda University of Applied Sciences. You can register for the course by contacting the course coordinator before the start of the course. The schedule for the academic year at Breda University of Applied Sciences differs from the schedule of Wageningen University. The periods mentioned are the periods of Wageningen University.

This course offers an introduction to the philosophy of social science. It prepares students to be able to distinguish between, and identify the relevance of, many different ways in which knowledge about the social world more generally - and tourism in particular - gets produced. Specifically, it introduces students to a key series of dichotomies and dilemmas with which social scientists continue to grapple: natural world/social world, explanation/interpretation, facts/values and structure/agency.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- know the difference between the ontology, epistemology and methodology of scientific research and is able to relate these concepts to tourism research;
- describe and compare the main philosophical approaches and interpret their influence on contemporary thinking with special attention for tourism;
- indicate and discuss the most important ethical dilemmas in tourism;
- apply ethical principles in debates on contemporary tourism practices;
- compose an essay (in English) on a specific tourism issue and the way this can be related to one or more philosophical approaches;

- explain a personal viewpoint supported by arguments using an appropriate structure of argumentation and attuned to a specific audience;

- reproduce and apply theories and methods on reflection and reflexivity.


To be determined.


The final assessment consists of the following components:
- written examination, ' take home exam' (40%);
- individual essay on research ethics (60%, including 10% for a progress report and discussion in class);
A final grade of 5.5 or higher for each part individually is considered a pass.


Mark J. Smith. (1998). Social Science in Question. Sage, published in association with The Open University. 352 p. ISBN-10: 0761960414.

Verplicht voor: BTOTourism (joint degree)BSc2WD+3WD