Degree Requirements for the Master of Arts (A.M.) in History of Science:
Minimum one-year residence of full-time study.
Eight four-credit courses or the equivalent are required, including:
• Historiography of the History of Science (HISTSCI 3003A).
• Research Methods in History of Science (HISTSCI 3003B).
• Four additional four-credit graduate seminars (200-level) of which three must be offered by the History of Science department; one must be outside the department. (Note: Graduate Reading and Independent Study courses---HISTSCI 301 and HISTSCI 302---do not fulfill graduate seminar requirement.)
• Two additional History of Science courses, designated either "for undergraduates and graduate students" (100-level) or "primarily for graduate students" (200 level).
• See History of Science Department Master's Degree Requirements Worksheet.
History of Science courses include:
1. Courses taught in other departments by members of the History of Science department faculty.
2. Courses cross-listed under History of Science in the online course catalogue.
3. Graduate-level courses offered by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the Science Technology and Society Program. (A maximum of three courses may be taken at MIT.)
All other courses count as outside the department. Faculty of Arts and Sciences Course catalogue may be found here.
The master’s essay is ordinarily a revised or expanded version of a paper written for a course in the history of science—HISTSCI 303b or another graduate seminar—taken during the AM year. Candidates for the AM must submit the AM Essay Topic Proposal form by March 1 of the AM year.
The essay must be submitted to the course instructor, DGS, and Graduate Coordinator by the last day of reading period. It must previously have been read and commented on by the instructor of the relevant seminar and revised on the basis of those comments. In cases in which the essay has not been written to fulfill course requirements, DGS will designate a faculty member to grade the essay.
The essay will be assessed based on the following criteria:
• It must present an original argument based on research in primary sources.
• It must be accompanied by a complete bibliography of works cited and references in an appropriate scholarly format.
• It must be 7,500-10,500 words in length, exclusive of bibliography.
• It must receive a grade of B+ or higher
Residence and Progress
Students must be in residence for one year of full-time study.
Eight courses must be completed with grades of "B" or higher.
All Master's students meet with the DGS and, where applicable, their advisor, at the start of each semester to review progress and approve plans of study.
Doctoral students who complete the doctoral course requirements and submit two research papers are eligible to receive an AM degree in History of Science with the approval of the Director of Graduate Studies and the faculty.