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History and Philosophy of Science

Undergraduates may major in philosophy with a field of study in History and Philosophy of Science (HPS).

To declare this field of study, please download and complete the course requirements sheet here. Please check the Stanford Bulletin (ExploreDegrees) for the most up to date requirements.

A total of 61 units is required for this track as follows:

I. Three science courses (for example, biology, chemistry, physics) for 12 units.

II. The following Philosophy (PHIL) core courses must be completed with a letter grade by the end of the junior year:

  1. One Logic course (Phil 49, 50, 150, 151, or 154)

  2. PHIL 60: Introduction to Philosophy of Science or PHIL 61: Science, Religion, and the Birth of Modern Philosophy.

  3. PHIL 80: Mind, Matter, and Meaning.

III. Three history of science courses.

IV. Three philosophy of science courses, one of which must be PHIL 164 Central Topics in the Philosophy of Science: Theory and Evidence.

V. Three additional courses in philosophy or history (to be approved by the advisor).



  • At least six courses in the major must be completed at Stanford with a letter grade.

  • Any units taken for a letter grade in fulfillment of the core requirements must be completed with a  grade of C- or higher.

  • Units for Tutorial, Directed Reading, or The Dualist (PHIL 196 Tutorial, Senior Year, PHIL 197 Individual Work, Undergraduate, PHIL 198 The Dualist) may not be counted in the 61-unit requirement.

  • No more than 10 units completed with grades of 'satisfactory' and/or 'credit' may be counted in the 61-unit requirement.

  • Substitutions and transfer units must be approved by the Student Services Officer at the time of declaring a major. 


HPS Faculty Advisor, Helen Longino