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How Does History Relate to Science?

Updated: Jul 12, 2021

In our core curriculum, we have 2 very similar and yet different classes: history and science. At first, they don’t seem related at all, science is about math and how the physical world works, while history focuses more on past events. But they share lots of similarities and sometimes rely on each other to support their own theories and discoveries. Mostly, they explain each other and themselves through records and written laws.

The Scientific Revolution happened during the 16th and 17th centuries, bringing a change of thought to how the world works. Previously, religion and the focus on why things happened had led the way to laws of physics we now know are false. The change came about as people looked back at history and noticed inconsistencies in past discoveries. History helped lead the Scientific Revolution to great heights, to the world we live in today.

A reason why previous views on science leaned heavily towards the idea of gods controlling the world, the seas, the earth, is because the technology that would explain events such as earthquakes and solar eclipses had not yet been created. And so, to explain these events, people created stories to justify their curiosity. Now, science can explain not only geological and astronomical events but historical ones as well such as the creation of the solar system and things beyond the present moment.

Science also looks at society, relates to political ideas, and drives the force of priorities of many people. Looking back, we can see the same patterns in previous ages where people’s priorities shift as scientific views start changing.

History and science share their core ideology: why do (or did) things happen. They look at records and create conclusions, theories, hypotheses. Things that may seem unrelated may have a deeper connection when looking from a different perspective. In both cases, they look at the world around us and ask how this came to be.


“History as a Part of Science.” American Association for the Advancement of Science,

“Why History and Science!” Department of the History of Science, Harvard University,

Bristol, Jenny, et al. “10 Reasons the History of Science Matters.” GeekDad, 15 Apr. 2014,

“Scientific Revolution.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.,

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