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No. 1
University in the Netherlands
Shanghai Ranking 2019
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Deeper meanings, bigger pictures

History and Philosophy of Science (HPS) offers a unique opportunity to study the foundations, practices, and culture of the sciences and humanities. We combine historical and philosophical perspectives to study past and present science. We investigate the interplay of science with cultural, social, political and institutional factors. We also analyse the fundamental structure of theories such as general relativity, quantum mechanics, evolution, and genetics. Our topics range from natural science and mathematics to social science and the humanities. 

Three students tell about their experience in the programme:

HPS is your master’s programme if you:

… asked too many questions during your Bachelor’s programme
… want to know the theory behind the theory
… want to understand how science relates to the rest of the world
… always look for the bigger picture


The curriculum covers courses on selected subjects in:

  • History of Science or the Humanities
  • Philosophy of Science or the Humanities
  • Foundations of Physics
The HPS programme has proven me that the technical and conceptual are both needed.
HPS Student Ambassador Ruward Mulder

Programme objective

The aim of the Master’s programme HPS is to offer you a thorough training in the history and/or philosophy or foundations of the sciences and humanities. You'll learn to develop and research historical or philosophical research questions. You will be educated in developing a professional attitude which enables you to enroll in a PhD programme in the HPS field, or start (on the job training) for a career in science education and communication, in museums, in science policy or science management.


If you are interested, you may consider doing the minor 'History and Philosophy of Science', which provides an excellent preparation for the Master's programme. It is also possible to do individual bachelor courses.


Degree: This Master's programme is officially registered under its name in the Central Register of Higher Education Study Programmes
  • Title: MSc
  • Master's degree in: History and Philosophy of Science
  • Programme: History and Philosophy of Science
Accredited by the NVAO
Croho code:
Language of instruction:
Part- or full-time status:
2 years
Credits: 60 credits equals one year full-time study load (European Credit Transfer System, ECTS)
Start of studies:
Application deadline:
  • Dutch & EU/EEA students: 1 June
  • Non-EU/EEA students: 1 April
Tuition fees:
Graduate school:
Natural Sciences