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Indiana University Bloomington

Undergraduate Study

The Department of History & Philosophy of Science offers an Interdisciplinary Area Certificate in History and Philosophy of Science. This program is intended to address the current crisis in American science education arising from increasing specialization and compartmentalization within the sciences, on the one hand, and general technical and scientific illiteracy outside the sciences, on the other.

By developing a new interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary program open to both undergraduates majoring in the sciences and undergraduates majoring in the humanities, we aim to give all undergraduates at Indiana University a unique opportunity to bridge the ever widening gap between the notorious "two cultures" of science and the humanities.

The program is organized and administered within the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, but it also involves a wide spectrum of other units across the university, such as the Departments of Anthropology, Biology, Chemistry, English, History, Mathematics, Philosophy, Physics, Psychological and Brain Sciences, Religious Studies, and Sociology; and the Schools of Business, Education, Informatics, Journalism, and Public and Environmental Affairs.

The program involves several different tracks that integrate the sciences and the humanities in a variety of ways: (1) Life Sciences. (2) Physics, Computation, and Cognition. (3) Science, Society, and Culture. (4) The Nature of Science. Within these tracks, there is a great deal of room for flexibility to accommodate students' interests in history and philosophy of science.

All courses taught in HPSC will automatically be eligible for credit within the area certificate, in accordance with the requirements outlined above, and conditional upon their acceptance by the HPSC Certificate Program Director. Some courses in other departments may be taken to fulfill the non-HPSC part of a student's track. The precise courses to be counted for credit will be determined in consultation with the HPSC Director of Undergraduate Studies in accordance with the above model.