Philosophy: The Free Will Assignment

The Due Date:


The purpose of this assignment is to give you practice in:

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1. Identify and apply a variety of metaphysical theory

2. Evaluate and differentiate between an epistemological, a metaphysical and an ethical question

3. Understand and apply the criteria of correct philosophical reasoning

4. Understand the difference between a rhetorically good argument and a rationally good argument.

5. Identify, reconstruct and evaluation arguments posed by philosophers

Outside of this course, this will help you understand and apply good reasoning, spot problems in another person’s side of a debate (or spot them in your own) and know how to rephrase a person’s stance in better, more easy to understand ways.


In the reading as well as the modules, we have discussed many different reasons for the belief that people have free will and many reasons to think otherwise. In this assignment you need to:

Choose one of the stances and explain it

Explain one of the drawbacks you think it has

Explain whether you think that the issue is damning or worth it

Explain why you think that

Each of these should take you around a paragraph to answer. Each of them is worth 5pts. Since this is worth 20pts, this is worth 5% of your total grade.


This is a bare outline of a possible paper, there is no explanations or anything like that in it:

One of the stances is Libertarianism.

Explanation of what Libertarianism is.

One of the drawbacks is that this dualistic view of the mind has no evidence to support it.

Examples of its lack of evidence (even in Descartes’ time, brain dissections showed that it didn’t work in the way necessary for his dualism).

I think that this is not a damning objection.

The reason for this is that they still haven’t gotten the brain all the way figured out.

In this version, I would be able to do the entire paper in 3 paragraphs. If you go that route, make it clear to me where the individual parts are.


To submit this assignment, I only accept .pdf, .doc, .odt, and .docx. I do not accept .pages. You can find where to submit in the upper right of this screen. As for all assignments in this class, the standard is Times New Roman, 12pt font, double spaced, 2-3 pages (that is, at least a few words onto the second page to the bottom of the third).