Concentrations provide the opportunity for students to explore their particular interest within STS by developing an individualized program. Each student assembles a program of four courses that help them explore a topic, problem, theme or question. These may be selected from courses offered within and beyond the History and Sociology of Science department.


Concentration Guidelines

  • Concentrations are made up of courses selected by the student. 
  • For each concentration, there is a list of pre-approved courses which you can find on our website. You can also search in Path@Penn by the appropriate course attribute. These pre-approved lists are meant to inspire, not require; they are provided as examples of possible ways the concentration can be individualized around student interests and goals.  
  • Students may petition courses for their concentration (see below). 
  • Up to two science courses that are 2000-level or higher may be included in the concentration.
  • Up to three non-College courses may be included in the concentration.

How to Petition Courses for the Concentration

The purpose of a petition is to make an argument as to how this course fits in the submajor with the other courses that are there. 
Petitions should be submitted promptly during or just after the semester in which the course occurs. Do not submit petitions for courses you have not taken yet*.

Submit a petition online.

*The exception to this rule is for seniors going into their senior spring. If you are a senior and you need to petition a course for spring semester, you will need to submit your petition before the end of add period. Please reach out to the undergrad chair or associate director to discuss your plans.