University Of Edinburgh

History of Science 1


Iowa State Course Substitution

Introduction to History of Science 1

HIST 280

Course Info
International Credits:
Converted Credits:
United Kingdom
Course Description:
Introductory survey of the development of scientific thought from Ancient Civilizations into the Twenty First Century. Paying attention to developments in astronomy mathematics physics biology chemistry space and computer science the course discusses major shifts in thinking e.g. Greek philosophy the Scientific and Industrial Revolutions and the role of science in the wars of the Twentieth Century. The course aims to show how non scientific factors like religion and politics have had a profound effect on the development of science and its methods as well as considering the impact of science on society in modern times. The course is appropriately combined with History of Medicine 1h. The course aims to provide a broad overview of some of the most salient developments in the history of science. These include the influence of Ancient Greek philosophy and Christian theology on the origins of modern scientific thinking, the development of the experimental method, of modern views on the nature of the cosmos, of Newtonian science, and of theories of biological evolution. In addition, we will look at the more recent history of science, covering the industrial revolution and the role of science in World Wars I and II and their aftermath including the space race, the increasing importance of ICT in science and the development of the Human Genome Project. It should provide an understanding of the intellectual bases of these developments as well as the chronological framework within which they took place. This is a lecture-based course, providing three lectures per week which are accompanied by required and optional readings. In addition, we will be interactively engaging with the history of science through: a. the exploration of Edinburgh as a city that contributed to the history of science and in which you will find the history of science on the streets, b. a visit to the National Museum of Scotland. The course is cross-discipline and open to students with backgrounds in humanities, social and natural sciences.


Evaluation Date:
December 18, 2015
Kevin Hill