Class Central is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

University of Edinburgh

Intellectual Humility: Theory

University of Edinburgh via Coursera


Faced with difficult questions people often tend to dismiss and marginalize dissent. Political and moral disagreements can be incredibly polarizing, and sometimes even dangerous. And whether it’s Christian fundamentalism, Islamic extremism, or militant atheism, religious dialogue remains tinted by arrogance, dogma, and ignorance. The world needs more people who are sensitive to reasons both for and against their beliefs, and are willing to consider the possibility that their political, religious and moral beliefs might be mistaken. The world needs more intellectual humility.

But what is intellectual humility, anyway? And why do people seem so drawn toward intellectual arrogance? Psychologists, philosophers, theologians, and educationalists are now suggesting some answers.

In this course we try to define intellectual humility and intellectual virtues in general, and ask how we know who is humble. All lectures are delivered by leading specialists, and the course is organised around a number of interesting readings and practical assignments which will help you address issues related to humility in your daily life.

This course is a part of a series which explores the theory, the science and the applied issues surrounding intellectual humility (the latter two coming in June and November 2017). Completing all three courses will give you a broader understanding of this fascinating topic. Look for:

• Intellectual Humility: Science -
• Intellectual Humility: Practice -

You can also follow us on twitter: @EdiPhilOnline and #IHMOOC


  • Getting started
  • What is intellectual humility?
    • by Dr Ian Church and Dr Peter Samuelson
  • What is an intellectual virtue?
    • by Professor John Greco
  • How do we know who is intellectually humble?
    • by Professor Peter C. Hill
  • End of course assignments

Taught by

Online Learning, Professor Duncan Pritchard, Dr Ian Church and Emma Catherine Gordon


5.0 rating, based on 6 Class Central reviews

4.5 rating at Coursera based on 359 ratings

Start your review of Intellectual Humility: Theory

  • I have taken this course before U of Edinburgh's MOOC offerings "Introduction to Philosophy" and the "Know Thyself" series, and I do think that this course, as the first in a series of 3, is a "spiritual" successor of those courses. Intellectual hum…
  • Kristin Williams Henry
    For me, this class was a fantastic introduction to the wonderful world of MOOCs! Not only was the content well-delivered and dynamic, with a variety of speakers, short and easily manageable video lectures, great discussion forum topics, and a wealth…
  • It is the very first course of the intellectual humility series. It helps us to understand what it is and how to mesure it. Great course.
  • This was a great way to start the Intellectual Humility series of courses. It gives you a strong foundation to build from. If you are interested in the Intellectual Humility series, this is where you start.

Never Stop Learning.

Get personalized course recommendations, track subjects and courses with reminders, and more.