History and philosophy of science

History and philosophy of science

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  • An orrery in the Whipple Museum's collection

The largest university department of its kind in the UK, the Department of History and Philosophy of Science has an outstanding international reputation for teaching and research.

The Department offers an MPhil in History, Philosophy and Sociology of Science, Technology and Medicine, with approximately 25 students per year. PhD students at any one time total approximately 45. There are also a number of Research Fellows and Visiting Scholars attached to the Department. 

The Department is a major centre for teaching and research in the history of medicine. Expertise in this field covers an exceptionally wide range, from antiquity to the present, from the medieval universities to the postwar laboratory sciences, from anatomy to psychoanalysis. The Department's programme in the history of medicine has been recognised by a strategic award from the Wellcome Trust.

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Clare Gordon

Associate Director — Humanities and Social Sciences


(+44) 7544 158 742

Opportunities in 'History and philosophy of science'

The late Professor John Forrester
The John Forrester Memorial Award is to honour the memory of Professor John Forrester, the former Head of the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, who sadly died in November 2015.
Inset photo of Professor Peter Lipton - credit Howard Guest
The Peter Lipton Prize was endowed in memory of Professor Peter Lipton, a former Head of Department, who died in 2007. It is awarded each year for the best overall performance in the History and Philosophy of Science Part III course.
The Tamara Hug Fund is in honour of Tamara Hug, the first Departmental Administrator for the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, who is retiring at the end of March 2021 after 33 years in service.
Whipple museum interior
The Whipple Museum holds an internationally important collection of scientific instruments and models, dating from the Middle Ages to the present. As well as being open to the public, it is regularly used by the Department's staff and students for teaching and research.

This opportunity is part of

Faculty of Law at night
The School of the Humanities and Social Sciences is concerned with human behaviour, its history and continuing development through the study of archaeology, anthropology, politics and international studies, sociology, economics, history, the philosophy of science, law, criminology and land economy. Notable alumni include John Maynard Keynes, Eric Hobsbawm, Simon Schama and Siegfried Sassoon.