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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 help people understand what underpins its successes and failures. We help people 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?

Our teaching has received 100% overall satisfaction in UK National Student Surveys in three of the past six 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 tutors at all stages of academic careers. (Some trained first as scientists; others, as social scientists.) We are careers conscious and we prepare students for flexible futures. We also have an active community of students studying for PhDs, Master’s, 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, averaging 2-3 hours per week. 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 studying only in the Fall Term are offered alternatives to examination.

Modules in History and Philosophy of Science

Please note that this guide lists a range of popular modules offered in 2018/19 as a representative sample. It is not exhaustive, and since the guide is published ahead of time, module options may have changed, been deleted or replaced. If you have very specific study needs or require confirmation of module availability for 2019/20, you are strongly advised to get in touch with the relevant Affiliate contact, listed on this subject page, before making an application.

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 (FHEQ 5) modules

Module code Title US credits ECTS credits CU credits
HPSC0012 Policy Issues in the Life Sciences 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0013 Science in Popular Culture 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0014 Philosophy of Science 2 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0017 Science and Ethics 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0019 Human Sciences and Society 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0022 Science and Religion 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0035 Science and Empire 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0124 Science in Government 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)

Level 3 (FHEQ 6) modules

Module code Title US credits ECTS credits CU credits
HPSC0010 History of Medicine 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0044 Science and the Publishing Industry 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0050 Philosophy of Natural Sciences 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0051 Research-led History and Philosophy of Science 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0057 Investigating Contemporary Science 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0061 Governing Emerging Technologies 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0063 History of Social Sciences 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0066 Science and Film Production 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0071 Nature, Technology and the Environment 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0107 Science Journalism 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0111 Science, Art and Philosophy 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC0134 Disease in History 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)
HPSC3028 Philosophy of Medicine 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)

Level 4 (FHEQ 7) modules

Module code Title US credits ECTS credits CU credits
HPSC0127 Engaging the Public with Science 4 (US) 7.5 (ECTS) 15 (FHEQ)

Contact details

Admissions Tutor
+44 (0)20 3108 1505
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