History and Philosophy of Science (Certificate)

At a Glance: program details

Certificate Map

Since ancient times, prevailing philosophical views and notions of science have always been interconnected, shifting with new waves of philosophical thought and scientific discoveries. Explore how these historical changes and this complex interaction have impacted and affected human society and cultural production.

Program Description

The undergraduate certificate program in the history and philosophy of science is designed to give students an understanding of the traditional philosophical issues surrounding science and the historical development of concrete scientific theories and ideas.

Philosophical questions about how nature is understood through science and how scientific claims gain authority are enriched when they are considered in a historical context. Such philosophical and historical study also often includes the examination of contemporary sciences and their place within the larger society, including the study of bioethics, policy and law.

This certificate is a valuable addition for students in the sciences or humanities. It crosses disciplines to help students engage in unfamiliar and familiar paths of inquiry in new and interesting ways.

The program is offered by the School of Life Sciences.

Program Requirements

The certificate requires 18 credit hours from the HPS and PHI subjects. At least 12 credit hours must be completed at the upper-division level and all courses counting toward the certificate must be completed with a grade of "C" (2.00 on a 4.00 scale) or higher.
Required Course -- 3 credit hours
Electives (choose five) -- 15 credit hours
Other elective options may be applied with the approval of an academic advisor in the School of Life Sciences.
Prerequisite courses may be needed in order to complete the requirements of this certificate.

Enrollment Requirements

Requests to declare this certificate are reviewed by the academic advisor in the academic unit offering the certificate. Students may be contacted to discuss the certificate prior to the addition of the certificate to the student record.

A student pursuing an undergraduate certificate must be enrolled as a degree-seeking student at ASU. Undergraduate certificates are not awarded prior to the award of an undergraduate degree. A student already holding an undergraduate degree may pursue an undergraduate certificate as a nondegree-seeking graduate student.

Career Outlook

Graduates who have combined the certificate in the history and philosophy of science with their major program of study may become more marketable to employers. They often decide to pursue employment in biology, medicine, law or ethics.

Advanced degrees or certifications may be required for academic, governmental or clinical positions.

Example Careers

Students who complete this degree program may be prepared for the following careers. Advanced degrees or certifications may be required for academic or clinical positions.


  • Growth: 8.2%
  • Median Salary*: 58640
  Bright Outlook

Area, Ethnic, and Cultural Studies Teachers, Postsecondary

  • Growth: 3.9%
  • Median Salary*: 80910


  • Growth: 3.1%
  • Median Salary*: 64540

History Teachers, Postsecondary

  • Growth: 1.3%
  • Median Salary*: 79400


  • Growth: 7.5%
  • Median Salary*: 135740
  Bright Outlook

Museum Technicians and Conservators

  • Growth: 9.9%
  • Median Salary*: 47270
  Bright Outlook

News Analysts, Reporters and Journalists

  • Growth: -3.3%
  • Median Salary*: 55960

Political Scientists

  • Growth: 6.6%
  • Median Salary*: 128020
  Bright Outlook

Philosophy and Religion Teachers, Postsecondary

  • Growth: 2.7%
  • Median Salary*: 78780


  • Growth: 4.5%
  • Median Salary*: 98590
  Bright Outlook

* Data obtained from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET) under sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Labor/Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA).

Program Contact Information

If you have questions related to admission, please click here to request information and an admission specialist will reach out to you directly. For questions regarding faculty or courses, please use the contact information below.