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Graduate Program in the History of Science, Technology, Environment, and Medicine (STEM)

Master’s Degree:

At the time of its birth four decades ago, the graduate program in the History of Science and Technology shared space and personnel at CWRU with the newly formed Society for the History of Technology (SHOT) and its journal,Technology and Culture.  In the years since, graduates and faculty in the program have served as secretaries of both SHOT and the History of Science Society, edited Technology and Culture, served as President of SHOT and President of the International Committee for the History of Technology (ICOHTEC), and won the Dexter Prize, the da Vinci Prize and many other honors in both the history of technology and the history of science.

The program in Science, Technology, Environment, and Medicine (STEM) provides areas of particular strength in the social and cultural history of technology, technology and science policy, environmental history and policy, the history of the physical sciences since the Renaissance, gender issues in technology and science, and the history of medicine.

During the first year of full-time study, students will take the relevant graduate literature survey courses, choosing three out of the following six course offerings: HSTY 378, 402, 427, 451, 452, and 495.  Students will also take History 470: Historiography, Method, and Theory.  A minimum of 27 semester credit hours (nine courses) is required for the master’s degree.  The student, in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies or the student’s thesis advisor, will decide the particular choice of courses.  No more than three credits of 300‑level courses may be taken.  Six credits of HSTY 651 (Thesis Research) and a master’s thesis are also required (included in the 27 total hours).  For other details on the Master’s program, see the description in the graduate handbook.

Ph.D. Course Work:

The student must complete 24 credit hours (excluding dissertation credit hours) of courses, seminars, and independent study approved by his or her advisor, including the courses listed above, plus HSTY 470, History 476, and History 479 (if not already taken for M.A.).  Students coming into the Program with an appropriate master’s degree from another university, or with a master’s degree from Case Western Reserve University in a program other than a History Department program, must also complete a minimum of 24 hours of course work.  Other details provided in graduate handbook.

Qualifying Examinations: See General Requirements for the Ph.D. in History in graduate handbook

Dissertation: A general description of the dissertation process can be found in the department’s graduate handbook.  The student must have a dissertation advisor and will select a dissertation topic in consultation with that advisor.  It is recommended that the student read a brief prospectus of the dissertation at a meeting of Program faculty and students by the end of the second semester after being advanced to candidacy.  This will inform others of the student’s research and will provide an early opportunity for criticism.  A dissertation represents original scholarship and as such must be based upon either (1) a substantial body of unpublished records, or (2) published primary materials of historical significance, such as a scientist’s books and articles.  The final dissertation must exhibit sustained inquiry of high quality, meeting the usual standards of scholarship in the field.  It must conform to the dissertation regulations of the School of Graduate Studies; it is the student’s responsibility to know and follow those regulations.  The dissertation defense is the last step in the process.

Page last modified: November 9, 2015