Bob Corbett, instructor


I have detailed the general thrust of the course in another place. I urge you to read with care the aim and intent of the course. This can be found at:

Course description

I have detailed the content of the six units on the main web page for this course. You may see those details at:

Six issues to be studied

What is not in those previous site are the specific dates which we will dedicate to each topic. They are as follows:

  1. Unit 1: Basic introduction to the course and beginning views of the purposes of education: 2 weeks, the weeks of:
    1. Mon. January 17
    2. Mon. January 24
  2. Unit 2: Ivan Illich. 3 weeks, the weeks of:
    1. Mon. January 31
    2. Mon. Feb. 7
    3. Mon. Feb. 14
  3. Unit 3: Philippe Aries, 3 weeks, the weeks of:
    1. Mon. Feb. 21
    2. Mon. Feb. 28
    3. Mon. March 6


  4. Unit 4: Paulo Freire, 3 weeks, the weeks of:
    1. Mon. March 20
    2. Mon. March 27
    3. Mon. April 4
  5. Unit 5: Ron Miller, 3 weeks, the weeks of:
    1. Mon. April 10
    2. Mon. April 17
    3. Mon. April 24
  6. Unit 6: Cyber space and the future of education: 2 weeks
    1. Mon. May 1
    2. Mon. May 8

Special note about this last week. This is exam week on campus. The general rule at Webster University is that if a professor doesn't give an exam, which I am not doing in this course, then classes must meet in the exam week. Since our meeting is a week-long meeting on-line, we will meet. This means that our last formal class day in Friday, May 12th, the day before graduation.

If you are leaving town and only have access to the computers at Webster U, then you will need to plan your leaving of campus with the work load of the last week and will have to finish before you leave or be short some of the work for the course. I will have that work load for the final unit posted well in advance.


The course will be graded on the basis of your written work on-line. I will grade by the different units.

Units 1 and 6 will be worth 500 points each.
Units 2-3-4-5 will be worth 1000 points each.

This means that in the course of the semester you could earn as many as 5000 points. The grade will be based on this system. In an absolute grading system (which I will minimally guarantee), this would mean that:

However, it is likely that I may curve the grade somewhat depending on the total scores of the class at the end. I will give you some good idea of how this is all moving at the mid-term and even the end of the third quarter.

Work will be graded by the week and late work will be penalized. Part of the aim of the course is to involve students with one another in on-line dialogue, so posting work in a timely fashion is a vital part of the course. Late work will be significantly penalized.

I will post assignments for each unit and their respective value. One of the difficulties with internet writings is gauging the length of the work, since I will often want to specific the sort of length I am after. The quality concerns will be the same as with any work, but I will need some length on some of the assignments. I will specify this is measures of BYTES. Thus something of two full pages of type on a normal 8 1/2 by 11 page is, for example, about 6000 bytes. Thus 3000 bytes equals one regularly typed page. Most e-mail messages in their unix forms do specify how many bytes the piece is, which includes the headings and all. If you write an assignment and then mail it to yourself first, you can gauge the number of bytes it is. I will use this measure as part of the grading system.

If you use an internet browser and not a unix system to receive e-mail you will need to learn how to read the number of bytes.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to e-mail me. You may also telephone me at my office and leave a message where the answering machine is virtually always on: 314-968-7172.

Bob Corbett

My Philosophy Page Webster U. Philosophy Department

Philosophy for Children Critical Thinking Current Semester Education Existentialism
Miscellaneous Topics Moral Philosophy Peace Issues Voluntary Economic Simplicity


Bob Corbett