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Department of

History and Philosophy of Science   

Graduate Program


Overview & Requirements

Areas of Concentration


Graduate Handbook

Placement Record


Special Program in History & Philosophy of Psychology, Neuroscience, and Psychiatry:

The Department of History and Philosophy of Science (HPS) is recognized as a world leader in general history and philosophy of science. In addition to strengths in the philosophy and history of biology, philosophy and history of physics, early modern natural philosophy, and ancient science, the department has excellent resources for graduate study in the history and philosophy of psychology, neuroscience and psychiatry.

Recent graduate seminars include Perception (Machamer & Machery), Philosophy of Cognitive Science (Machery), Evolution and Cognition (Machery).

The department is able to offer a generous package of financial support to most successful applicants for admission and has an excellent record of placing its PhD graduates in academic positions.

Participating Faculty:

Jim Bogen, Emeritus, Pitzer College (philosophy), Adjunct Professor, HPS. Philosophy and history (19th century on) of neuroscience. Recent work includes “Two as Good as a Hundred: The Use of Poorly Replicated Evidence in Some 19th Century Neuroscience” (Studies in History and Philosophy of the Biological and Biomedical Sciences 32, 3, 2001), and “Functional Brain Imaging: a Custard Pie for Epistemologists” (Proceedings of the PSA 2000).

Clark Glymour. Professor, CMU, Adjunct Professor, HPS. Philosophy of psychology, neuropsychology, AI. Author of The Mind's Arrows: Bayes Nets and Graphical Causal Models in Psychology (MIT, 2003).

Jim Lennox, Professor, HPS. Emotions and psychiatric disorders (philosophy and history of).

Edouard Machery, Assistant Professor, HPS, CNBC. Philosophy of cognitive science, experimental philosophy. Author of Doing Without Concepts (Oxford, forthcoming).

Peter Machamer, Professor, HPS, CNBC. History and philosophy of perception and cognition, philosophy of neuroscience, epistemology. Editor with R. Grush and P. McLaughlin, Theory and Method in the Neurosciences (Pittsburgh, 2001).

Sandra D. Mitchell, Professor, HPS. Epistemological issues in neuroscience. Author of Biological Complexity and Integrative Pluralism (Cambridge, 2003).

Robert C. Olby, Research Professor, HPS. History of neuroscience. Author of The Path to the Double Helix: The Discovery of DNA (Dover, 1994).

Kenneth F. Schaffner, University Professor, HPS, Professor, Psychiatry. Philosophy and history of biology and medicine, including psychiatry. Author of Discovery and Explanation in Biology and Medicine, (Chicago, 1993) and Behaving: What’s Genetic and What’s Not? (Oxford, forthcoming).

Current and Recent Dissertation Projects:

Justin Sytsma, “Not Something, Not Nothing: On the Possibilities for a Science of Consciousness”.

Holly Andersen, “Agency and Causal Representation”.

Jacqueline Sullivan, “Reliability and Validity of Experiment in the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory”.

Gualtiero Piccinini, “Computations and Computers in the Sciences of Mind and Brain”.

Carl Craver, “Neural mechanisms: On the structure, function, and development of theories in neurobiology”.