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Study abroad guide

History and Philosophy of Science

History and Philosophy of Science is offered by UCL's Department of Science and Technology Studies (STS), which also delivers programmes in science policy and science communication. As a community, we use history and philosophy to help people understand how science acts as a force in modern society and around the world. We want to understand what underpins its successes and failures. We want to understand its boundaries and concentrations.

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Mathematical & Physical Sciences
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History and Philosophy of Science

Why study History and Philosophy of Science at UCL?

Founded in 1921, our teaching has received 100% overall satisfaction in UK National Student Surveys in three of the past five years. UCL remains the first (and only) British university to offer History and Philosophy of Science as a single honours undergraduate degree. We have an international teaching staff and a vibrant programme of visiting speakers who are outstanding in their field. We are careers conscious and prepare students for flexible futures. We also have an active community of students studying for PhDs, masters, and other undergraduate degrees.

What you will gain from study at UCL

Our programme welcomes students from all backgrounds, ranging across all the humanities and sciences. Incoming students can expect to find a truly interdisciplinary community ready to engage, challenge, and inspire. Those pursuing a science degree at home will find complementary modules to help them become better scientists.

Teaching and assessment

Modules typically involve approximately 20 hours of lecture or seminar time per term. Assignments are diverse across the programme as a whole: film- and podcast-making sit side-by-side with posters, blogs, events, and a wide variety of academic writing. Traditional examinations are rare, and students present only for the Fall Term will be offered alternative assessment.

Modules in History and Philosophy of Science

Please note that this guide lists a wide range of popular module options, but it is not exhaustive and some modules may have changed or no longer be available. If you have a particular interest or academic requirement you are advised to cross reference the listing in the online Study Abroad Guide with that on the relevant departmental pages, and to contact the department to make sure that an appropriate module is available.

If you have a particular interest or academic requirement, then please contact the admissions tutor. Affiliate students tend to take modules predominately at Level 3.

Level 2 modules

Module code Title US credits ECTS credits CU credits
HPSC2002 Science in Popular Culture 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC2003 Philosophy of Science 2 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC2006 Science and Ethics 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC2012 Science and Religion 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC2013 Evolution in Science and Culture 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC2019 History of Natural Sciences 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC2025 Special Topics in Science and Society 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC2026 Science and Empire 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC2028 Thinking about Technology 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)

Level 3 modules

Module code Title US credits ECTS credits CU credits
HPSC3002 Science, Warfare, and Peace 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3014 Science in the Age of Newton 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3015 History of Astronomy and Cosmology 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3020 Philosophy of Natural Sciences 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3028 Philosophy of Medicine 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3029 History of Medicine 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3032 Investigating Contemporary Science 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3034 Science, Art and Philosophy 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3040 Science, Politics and the State in Russia and the Soviet Union 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3041 Disease in History 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3043 History of Social Sciences 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3045 Philosophy of Information 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3048 Science in the Ancient World 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3049 Sleeping and Dreaming 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3051 Zoos in Science and Culture 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)
HPSC3052 Nature, Technology and the Environment 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 0.5 (CU)

Contact details

Admissions Tutor
+44 (0)20 3108 1505
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