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Department of

History and Philosophy of Science   

Undergraduate Program


HPS Honors

Requirements for the major

Undergraduate Course Offerings

Certificate in Conceptual Foundations of Medicine

University of Pittsburgh Summer Sessions

Basil Valentine,
Last Will and Testament, London, 1671.

A minimum of 37 credit hours are required for the major and include:

  1. Four elective courses in HPS, one of which must be at the 1xxx level.
  2. Logic requirement, which may be fulfilled by taking HPS 0611 or Philosophy 0500.
  3. HPS 1653 Introduction to Philosophy of Science. The logic requirement should be completed before taking 1653.
  4. HPS 1702 Junior/Senior Seminar for HPS Undergraduate Majors.
    • Prerequisites
      1. A logic course - HPS 0611 or Philosophy 0500
      2. HPS 1653 Introduction to Philosophy of Science.
      3. A history of science course e.g. HPS 0427 Myth and Science; HPS 0545 Space-Time-Matter; HPS 0515 Magic, Medicine and Science; or any other suitable course approved by the director of undergraduate studies.
  5. HPS 1703 Writing Workshop for Undergraduate Major. This is a one-credit course that is taken in conjunction with HPS 1702.
  6. Fifteen credit hours in the natural or social sciences. Majors must pursue at least one science at an advanced level.

Writing Requirement:
The writing requirement for the major is fulfilled by taking HPS 1703, which is offered in conjunction with HPS 1702.

Declaring an HPS Major:
Before declaring an HPS major, students must complete two HPS courses with a B- or better or receive permission of the major advisor.

Grade Requirements for Courses in Major:
Students who wish to graduate with a major in HPS must maintain a 2.0 quality point average in courses to be used toward the major.

Double Majors:
HPS is easily combined with a major in any science as a double major. This provides the student with a deeper historical and conceptual understanding of the science(s) he or she is studying.

Related Areas:
Any of the natural or social sciences may be used as a related area.

S/N Grading Option:
No courses to be counted toward the major may be taken on a Satisfactory/Audit basis.

Language Requirement:
There are no language requirements beyond those required by CAS. However, students who plan to continue in graduate studies should remember that language competency may be required at that level. French, German, Latin, or Greek are especially useful.