Welcome to the History and Philosophy of Science Graduate Program at Notre Dame

Our doctoral program offers graduate-level instruction leading to a discipline-based HPS Ph.D. Students in our distinctive, inter-departmental program are also fully trained in philosophy, history, or theology.

We also offer a concurrent master’s degree and a graduate minor to students enrolled in other Notre Dame Ph.D. programs.

Our faculty members are drawn from a variety of departments including history, philosophy, theology, english, and the program of liberal studies. Our students come from a wide range of backgrounds in the humanities and sciences, and take their HPS expertise on into positions in academia and elsewhere (see our alumni page, under 'HPS People').

Recent News

Pablo Ruiz de Olano presents his research in the U.K.


HPS student Pablo Ruiz de Olano just came back from presenting his dissertation research at the Universities of Cambridge, Oxford, Leeds, and the LSE. In Oxford and Cambridge, Pablo gave a talk titled “Intimate Connections: Symmetries and Conservation Laws in Quantum vs. Classical Mechanics,” which summarizes the main technical findings in his dissertation. In Leeds and the LSE, Pablo gave a second talk called “Epistemic Values in Theoretical Physics: Symmetries, Conservation Laws, and the Strong Nuclear Interaction,” which examines the role that epistemic values play in the development and evaluation and scientific theories. 

NDHPS postdoctoral fellowships

Thank you to all those who have applied for our NDHPS postdoctoral fellowships. The closing date for applications has now passed. Due to the large number of applications received (three times the number in previous years), we are unable to respond to individual emails from applicants. Please be assured that if we find that we are lacking any of your materials as we go through the assessment process, we will be in touch. We anticipate conducting interviews in March, and if you have not heard from us by the end of March, please assume that your application is no longer under consideration. We apologize for not being in touch with everyone personally, and thank you again for your application.

Congratulations to ND HPS alum Manuela Fernandez Pinto on her new position


ND HPS philosopher of science Manuela Fernandez Pinto, who graduated in 2014, has accepted a tenure-track position at the Universidad de los Andes in Columbia. The appointment is joint between the Department of Philosophy and the Center of Ethics. Congratulations and best wishes to Manuela, and we look forward to the new opportunities this opens up for collaboration between the Reilly Center and the Universidad de los Andes.

Alice Dreger to speak on February 17

Galileo's Middle Finger

Historian and activist Alice Dreger will draw from her book, Galileo’s Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science, to explore the ways in which freedom of research is under assault from multiple fronts, including identity politics activism, the corporatization and branding of universities, and social media shaming campaigns. The speaker, who has twenty years’ experience both as an intersex patient rights activist and as an academic historian, will use case studies to talk about the dangers researchers face today. She will also speak to how researchers can work individually and collectively to try to protect themselves. She argues they must do so not for their own sake, but for the sake of social progress in our fragile democracy.

Wednesday February 17, 2016 at 4:15PM, Room TBA
This is part of the Reilly Center's Coogan Lecture Series for Excellence in the History of Medicine. 
Click here for more info

Notre Dame HPS Among Ten University Programs Joining ACLS’s Postdoctoral Partnership Initiative

ACLS has announced partnerships with 10 US institutions of higher learning as part of the new Postdoctoral Partnership Initiative (PPI). In June, ACLS issued an open call for proposals from institutions that wished to augment the number or benefits of humanities postdoctoral fellowships that they would offer in the 2015-16 competition cycle (for fellows to take up two-year positions beginning in 2016-17). The initiative, made possible by the generous assistance of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is designed to provide insight into the impact of postdoctoral fellowships on humanities scholars’ careers and the value of such postdocs to the institutions that host them. It also seeks to foster cross-institutional conversation about the role of these positions in the changing humanities professoriate. Click here to read more from the ACLS website.
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HPS program welcomed ten new and visiting faculty and students this Fall

Julianna Poole

Julianna Poole (History track) has a masters degree in molecular biology from Princeton and is currently pursuing research on the character and effects of Old English medical remedies.

Martin Beers (Philosophy track) comes to us from Thomas Aquinas College, and has research interests in philosophy of physics.

Jude Galbraith's (Philosophy track) undergraduate degree is in philosophy from the University of Dallas, and he is interested in ethical implications of science and how science intersects with society.

Sebastian Murgueitio Ramirez (Philosophy track) was a double major in philosophy and physics at Universidad de los Andes, Bogota, and his interests are in philosophy of physics. 

Evan Ragland

Evan Ragland is an Assistant Professor in the Department of History. He works on the development of widespread practices of experimentation in early modern Europe. He teaches and researches on the histories of science and religion and the senses. Among his publications are: Early Modern Medicine and Natural Philosophy (Springer, forthcoming fall 2015); “Mechanism, the Senses, and Reason: Franciscus Sylvius and Dutch Debates over Anatomical Knowledge after Harvey and Descartes,” in Early Modern Medicine and Natural Philosophy, forthcoming 2015; “Introduction,” co-authored with Benjamin Goldberg, in Early Modern Medicine and Natural Philosophy, forthcoming 2015. Learn more >

Nicholas Teh

Nicholas Teh is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy. His main research area is the philosophy of physics, and broader research interests include the philosophy of science, as well as a range of topics in metaphysics, ethics, and aesthetics . I have two longer-term research projects within this general area. Learn more >


Norman Sieroka is visiting from ETH Zürich, where he is now Chair of Philosophy and a senior research fellow. His focus is on philosophy of mind (in particular phenomenology), philosophy of physics and mathematics, natural philosophy, and the historiography of philosophy and of the sciences. He is teaching a graduate HPS course this Fall titled Philosophical Issues Concerning Time. 

Laura Georgescu is a PhD student at Ghent University in the Department of Philosophy & Moral Science. She is visiting Notre Dame as a Provost's Initiative Visiting Scholar this Fall. Her research is on the history and philosophy of scientific experimentation, specifically on how scientific concepts are articulated, stabilized, and destabilized through experimentation. She works on attempts to make sense of magnetism and magnetic phenomena from the late sixteenth century to the early nineteenth century.

Sander Klaase is a PhD Candidate in Science and Religion at The University of Edinburg. He is visiting ND until October via the Edinburgh Exchange Program. He is working in the field of science and religion and engaging in the realism debates of philosophy of science and philosophy of religion.

Aleta Quinn

Aleta Quinn is a Residential Fellow at the NDIAS this Fall. She graduated from the Department of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh in 2015 and is a philosopher of science with research interests in the history and philosophy of biology and the role of values in science. Her research has focused on systematics, the science that discovers biodiversity. Her research awards include a Smithsonian Institution Predoctoral Fellowship and a Provost’s Development Fund Award from the University of Pittsburgh. Learn more >

Find more news in our News Archive or Reilly Center news on Facebook at facebook.com/NDReillyCenter



Upcoming Events

Tue Feb 16, 2016

Wed Feb 17, 2016

Message From the Program Director

Katherine Brading cropped

Thank you to everyone who participated in our celebration conference marking 25 years of our doctoral program! Welcoming back so many of our alumnae and alumni was wonderful, and we look forward to seeing many more of you back here in the coming months and years: please get in touch if you would like to visit! To prospective graduate students and visitors: please enjoy exploring our website to familiarize yourself with our activities and the opportunities we offer, and feel free to contact me with any questions you may have.

Katherine Brading
- Director, History and Philosophy of Science Graduate Program
- Associate Professor of Philosophy

Email: kbrading@nd.edu
University of Notre Dame
451 Geddes Hall
Notre Dame, IN 46556
(574) 631-9844