Teaching/Learning Philosophy

Principal Investigator:

Maria Luísa Ribeiro Ferreira

Funding Institution: FCT
Date: 2011-2014


FCT Project PTDC/FIL-FIL/102893/2008

The project entitled The Teaching / Learning of Philosophy intends to gather researchers from various universities that along their courses have leaned on the subject, either when teaching it, or writing about it. It presupposes that when reflecting on the teaching/learning of Philosophy, one is still in the core of it, and not abandoning its practice. It is then vital to consider (more than consider, to prove) that didactics of Philosophy is a strictly philosophical discipline. In the remaining disciplines, the reflection on its didactics is a separate task from the core of the subjects. In fact, one cannot say to be making history or mathematics when studying didactics adequate to their teaching. When talking of Philosophy, the reflection on both the ways it is taught and learnt, takes us to the main point of the discipline, becoming a justification of itself. One must take into consideration that one of the fundamental problems that go back to the sophists and Plato is that of a teachable Philosophy. This them is frequently discussed by several philosophers, Kant and Hegel can be chosen as the two most important and different answers. Kant tells us that one cannot learn Philosophy, instead can only learn how to philosophize. On the other hand, Hegel says that Philosophy and to philosophize are compatible and inseparable activities.

The dominant guide on this project is that Philosophy can be taught and learnt, by showing the specification of that learning, discussing the way it has been defined by philosophers that studied the subject, analysing its importance in the Portuguese case, one of the countries where Philosophy has been and still is a very important subject in pre-college education, and finally by showing the compatibility between the teaching of Philosophy and the new teaching methods, mainly audio-visuals and informatics. 

The project includes four areas, each with a prime objective. And they are:

1. The didactics of Philosophy: Philosophy can be taught and learnt
2. What have the different philosophers thought about the teaching of Philosophy
3. Philosophy teaching Programs in Portugal
4. Philosophy’s new teaching methods

Research Team

Maria Luísa Ribeiro Ferreira, António Pedro Mesquita, Maria José Vaz Pinto, António Moreira Teixeira, Alessandra Costa Pinto, António Rocha Martins, Alejandro Cerletti, Celso Carminati, Maurício Langon,  Joana Gameiro, Joana Marques, Maria de Faro Pereira de Almeida, Maria Helena Lebre, Maria Teresa Ximenez, Patrícia Bastos, José Arêdes.


Maria José Vaz Pinto e Maria Luísa Ribeiro Ferreira (coord.) Ensinar Filosofia? O que dizem os filósofos, Lisboa, Centro de Filosofia da Universidade de Lisboa, 2013, 363 pp.

Maria Luísa Ribeiro Ferreira, Ensinar e Aprender Filosofia num Mundo em Rede, Lisboa, Centro de Filosofia da Universidade de Lisboa, 2012, 384 pp.


2013 Sessão de reflexão sobre Filosofia para Crianças, ministrada por Maria Gabriela Castro e Magda Carvalho, a 4 de Julho de 2013, na sala 5.2 da Faculdade de Letras da Universidade de Lisboa (com a Faculdade dos Açores) Seminário sobre Os Filóso