Statistics

Though Statistics is described as a “young discipline” by the 49 Book, data collection and analysis are as old as human civilization itself. Livy, in Book I of his Ab urbe condita (which Houghton owns in multiple copies, including a 1470 incunabulum [Inc 3345, 005274015]), describes how king Servius Tullius…

Physics

Much like with sciences such as chemistry, the physics collection at Houghton is very focused on the history of the subject rather than on more practical aspects of the concentration. That is not to say, however, that the library’s material is obsolete. To understand most of the concepts in modern…

Neurobiology

The study of the nervous system—especially the brain—is also an interdisciplinary venture, a fact very much reflected by Harvard’s Neurobiology concentration. Described by the 49 Book as “arguably the least understood and most important area of biology,” it can involve not only the life sciences but also social sciences and…

Mathematics

The Mathematics concentration at Harvard is focused on the pure, theoretical study of numbers—Applied Mathematics is a separate concentration, focused on interdisciplinary pursuits and discussed above. Houghton has materials serving students in both fields, and the library is especially rich in historical and theoretical material about pure mathematics, which can…

Integrative Biology

Integrative Biology, with its interdisciplinary yet evolution-centered approach to the life sciences, is a very versatile concentration. Houghton’s archive is a treasure trove for a science concentration so dependent on the history of the field and on history itself. Moreover, Integrative Biology’s heavy emphasis on ecology and organismal interactions makes…

Human Evolutionary Biology

Charles Darwin’s Theory of Natural Selection is perhaps the most polemical scientific postulate in human history. The ramifications of his civilization-changing work have left the realm of biology and bled through to other sciences and Harvard concentrations, most notably Integrative Biology, and even the social sciences and the humanities, especially…

Human Developmental and Regenerative Biology

The Human Developmental and Regenerative Biology concentration focuses on the growing and self-renewing human body. The field is at the edge of modern research, focusing especially on stem cells and intercellular signaling pathways—areas with few materials at Houghton because of their young age as subjects and their dizzying self-updating rates.…

Environmental Science and Public Policy

The environment is a universal human concern, and the Environmental Science and Public Policy concentration seeks to tackle issues surrounding it from multiple perspectives, including the hard, life, and social sciences. Houghton and its historical collections contain a variety of materials about the environment that can aid ESPP concentrators to…

Earth and Planetary Sciences

The Earth and Planetary Sciences concentration unites disciplines such as geology, climate science, environmental geoscience, geobiology, geochemistry, and geophysics, among many others, to study the planet’s so-called natural systems—the atmosphere, the oceans, the biosphere, and the earth. Interconnected with other concentrations such as Astrophysics, Chemistry, Physics, and the multiple engineerings,…

Chemistry and Physics

Much like for the Chemistry and the Physics concentrations, it is difficult to provide a list of Houghton materials for Chemistry and Physics research that does not involve historical considerations. Many of those materials, in fact, overlap with items that help the two parent concentrations. However, Houghton does contain a…

Chemistry

Houghton has a call number for Chemistry, and there are hundreds of materials that fall under the category. However, as a science concentration, the subject is much more prone to looking to the future than to the past to answer questions and find new lines of inquiry. A collection steeped…