History and Philosophy of Science

Major/Minor/Specialisation !D21-AA-SPC+1019 (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Year and Campus: 2015


Dr Gerhard Wiesenfeldt

Email: gerhardw@unimelb.edu.au


Phone: 13 MELB (13 6352)
Email: 13MELB@unimelb.edu.au


The aim of History and Philosophy of Science is to understand science: how it works, its historical development and its function in modern society. History and Philosophy of Science integrates philosophical, historical and sociological approaches to the study of science. It provides students with an insight into scientific methods and objectives without actually having to do science. Students will gain analytical skills in evaluating scientific (and non-scientific) knowledge as well as a broad understanding of the historical development of science in its interactions with philosophy, religion and society.

Learning Outcomes:

Students who complete the Graduate Certificate in Arts in this area of specialisation should:

  • identify, understand and synthesise the major theoretical, philosophical, sociological and historiographical themes in HPS;
  • possess a deep knowledge of one of the following areas: history of science; philosophy of science; sociology of science;
  • create sustained and critical arguments using appropriate knowledge and methods, culminating in independent and self-directed research;
  • develop an awareness of the relationship between HPS and other disciplines, especially the sciences;
  • demonstrate integrity and ethical awareness in all aspects of the programme‚Äôs learning activities;
  • apply HPS knowledge to real-world practice, including the development of policy and the provision of informed comment about science and society;
  • develop a wide range of life skills including: life-long learning; excellent communication; effective collaboration in small and large groups; and a high-level of organization;
  • reflect upon our own (individual) relationship with science and society.
Structure & Available Subjects:

Duration: 6 months full-time / 1 year part-time

Please note: 2015 mid-year intake commencing students can only take this program on a part-time basis and will not be available for international students.

The Graduate Certificate in Arts in this area of specialisation requires:

  • one compulsory subject (12.5 points)
  • three elective subjects (37.5 points)

Total 50 points

Please note: students can only take 12.5 points of elective subjects at first-year level

Subject Options:

Compulsory Subject

12.5 points

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:

Elective Subjects

37.5 points

Please note: no more than 12.5 points can be taken at first-year level

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Not offered in 2015
Semester 2
Not offered in 2015
Links to further information: http://shaps.unimelb.edu.au/
Related Course(s): Graduate Certificate in Arts

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