Degree Courses

This page offers an international list of degree course offerings in intellectual history. If you would like your degree course listed, or require amendments to your current listing, please contact: isih-info@history.ox.ac.uk.

United Kingdom

University College London / Queen Mary

This MA is an intercollegiate University of London programme jointly administered and awarded by University College London and Queen Mary University of London. The MA draws on the expertise of academic staff from the Colleges and Institutes of the University as a whole in the fields of the history of political thought and intellectual history. The programme offers advanced training in intellectual history, the history of political thought and the history of philosophy, spanning the period from the ancient world to the twenty-first century. The MA also provides students with essential grounding in the various methods and approaches associated with the study of the history of thought developed over the past quarter-century in the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States. Members of staff are drawn from Departments of History, Law, Modern Languages and Literature, Philosophy, and Politics within the University of Londonand are often affiliated with the Centre for the Study of the History of Political Thought.

For more information, please visit the course webpage.

University of St Andrews

The MLitt in Intellectual History is an interdisciplinary programme which provides students with a broad knowledge of the latest intellectual-historical research, encompassing politics, religion, philosophy, science, international relations, economics and literature.  The MLitt in Intellectual History is an interdisciplinary taught postgraduate programme. The course offers three compulsory modules exploring major historical, historiographical, and methodological aspects of intellectual history alongside an individually-tailored programme of directed reading. Its interdisciplinary programme brings together experts from across the University with a common interest in researching and contextualising key ideas in their subject areas. Students learn to treat past ideas as historical phenomena, as well as assess the meanings of these ideas as intended by their authors, and in contexts beyond those their authors may have foreseen. The course covers the different kinds of intellectual history being practised today, and the relationship between intellectual history and philosophy, literature and literary studies, international relations, law, politics, economics and theology.

For more information, please visit the course webpage.

University of Sussex

Sussex has been one of the main contributors to the flourishing of intellectual history in Britain and is today a leading centre in the field, both in scholarship and teaching. It was one of the first universities in Britain to create a course in intellectual history and it remains one of the few to offer postgraduate courses in this exciting discipline. The MA gives you the opportunity to acquire a thorough knowledge of the interrelations between philosophy, political thought, science, religion and economics in the early modern and modern period across Britain and Europe. You study the major transformations of the reflective and intellectual life of both thinkers and doers, whose ideas are approached through their literary texts as well as their practical contexts. In addition, the MA’s aim is to prepare you for more advanced study. To this end, and to put the whole programme of study into broader perspective, you take four intensive pro-seminars in methods and approaches to intellectual history. This provides methodological research training in addition to detailed knowledge of the major research areas of intellectual history as it is currently practised internationally.

For more information, please visit the course webpage.

The Warburg Institute

The Warburg Institute MA in Cultural and Intellectual History aims to equip students for interdisciplinary research in the late medieval and early modern period, with a particular emphasis on the reception of the classical tradition. Students will become part of an international community of scholars, working in a world-famous library. They will broaden their range of knowledge to include the historically informed interpretation of images and texts, art history, philosophy, history of science, literature and the impact of religion on society. During this twelve-month, full-time course, students will improve their knowledge of Latin, French and Italian and will acquire the library and archival skills essential for research on primary texts. Full-time study for the PhD degree entails three or a maximum of four years’ independent research, culminating in the writing of a thesis of not more than 100,000 words. Part-time students complete the same programme in five, or a maximum of six years.

For more information, please visit the course webpage.

United States

Harvard University

Intellectual history is a diverse and thriving field of inquiry that emphasizes the transformation of ideas, ideologies, intellectuals, and scholarly institutions over time. Harvard’s department of history is home to a great many intellectual historians. For sheer number, there are perhaps more of us here than at any other single department in Europe or North America, joined by affiliated faculty in Harvard’s department of philosophy, in the department of government, and history of science. We work on topics spanning the centuries and crossing the globe, from Asia to the Americas and from Ancient Greece to Modern Europe. Undergraduates at Harvard can choose intellectual history as their chosen field of specialization within the history concentration. Graduate students can designate fields for intellectual history in a particular time and place.

For more information, please visit the course webpage.