Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

Click on an offering mode for more details.

Unit Overview


Many of the most pressing issues of our time - climate change, poverty, human rights, war, refugees - raise issues of global and environmental justice. This course consists of in-depth study of the work contemporary philosophers writing on these issues. Topics may include: the duties of the affluent to aid the global poor, immigration, the rights of refugees and the duties of states, secession, war, the nature of environmental value, animal rights, and issues in climate justice. This course is intended as offering a rich grounding in moral, social and political philosophy and is relevant to questions in applied ethics.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 2 core unit in the Human Rights; International Relations; Social and Environmental Sustainability major sequences
  • Level 2 option in the Philosophy; Philosophy, Politics and Economics major sequences

Students are able to (1) locate issues of global and environmental justice in their historical cultural context; (2) independently interpret philosophical texts; (3) evaluate philosophical positions, including identifying counter-examples and identifying and questioning their basic assumptions; (4) demonstrate strong written communication and research skills; (5) explain influential philosophical views concerning major issues in global and environmental justice such as war, climate change, and global poverty; and (6) reason in a constructive and cooperative way about polarising moral and political issues.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) in-class assessment; (2) essay; and (3) exam. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Lachlan Umbers and Dr Michael Rubin
Unit rules
Successful completion of
Unit(s) PHIL2009 Global and Environmental Justice
Advisable prior study
PHIL1001 Justice and Contemporary Ethics
Contact hours
2 hours of lecture recording (plus 1-hour tutorial) per week
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.