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Creationism, Evolution, and Science Education June 22, 2005 Fermilab Eugenie C. Scott, Ph.D. Executive Director National Center for Science Education,

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Presentation on theme: "Creationism, Evolution, and Science Education June 22, 2005 Fermilab Eugenie C. Scott, Ph.D. Executive Director National Center for Science Education,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Creationism, Evolution, and Science Education June 22, 2005 Fermilab Eugenie C. Scott, Ph.D. Executive Director National Center for Science Education, Inc.

2 Jeffrey Selman This textbook contains material on evolution. Evolution is a theory, not a fact, regarding the origin of living things. This material should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully, and critically considered.

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5 Kitzmiller et al. vs Dover Students will be made aware of gaps/problems in Darwin’s Theory and of other theories of evolution including, but not limited to, intelligent design.

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7 Alabama HB 352/SB 240 Arkansas HB 2607 Georgia HB 179 Missouri HB 35 Mississippi HB 2886 Montana HB 1199 Oklahoma SB 719 South Carolina SB 114 Texas HB 220 (textbooks) Pennsylvania HB New York A 3036 Utah (planned – 2006) Antievolution legislation in 2005

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9 1. Ban Evolution Antievolution laws

10 Bryan’s Antievolution Arguments Evolution is unsupported science Evolution incompatible with religion Citizens -- not experts -- should determine the curriculum

11 “Pillars of Creationism” Evolution is a “theory in crisis” Evolution and religion are incompatible It’s only “fair” to teach creationism with evolution

12 Epperson vs Arkansas, 1987

13 Epperson v. Arkansas, 1968 [law unconstitutional because it] …selects from the body of knowledge a particular segment which it proscribes for the sole reason that it is deemed to conflict with a particular religious doctrine.

14 2. Creation “Science”

15 Henry M. Morris John C. Whitcomb

16 Graphic

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18 “The Act impermissibly endorses religion by advancing the religious belief that a supernatural being created humankind. “

19 Edwards v. Aguillard, 1987 (teachers are free to teach…) …any and all scientific theories [about the origin of humankind. Justice Brennan

20 The people of Louisiana, including those who are Christian fundamentalists, are quite entitled, as a secular matter, to have whatever scientific evidence there may be against evolution presented in their schools, just as Mr. Scopes was entitled to present whatever scientific evidence there was for it. Scalia, dissent to Edwards, 1987

21 Consequences of Brennen decision and Scalia dissent: “Scientific alternatives to evolution” - “abrupt appearance theory” - “intelligent design theory” “Evidence against evolution”

22 3. Neocreationism

23 “New” Creationism: Intelligent Design Behe, Johnson, Dembski Wells, Meyer

24 “It is fundamentally implausible that unassisted matter and energy organized themselves into living systems.” Dean Kenyon

25  Bullet text goes here 40 pt

26 Elements of Intelligent Design Scientific/Philosophical “Cultural Renewal” Design can be detected Irreducible complexity The design inference

27 William Dembski

28 Demb.filter

29 Dembski’s Explanatory Filter Event HP: Natural Cause IP or Unspec. LP: Chance LP, Spec.: Design

30 Event High Probability? No Low prob., Unsp? No LP, Specified? Design! UNKNOWN natural cause

31 It gets interesting when you apply these methods to the natural sciences where there is no human or extraterrestrial intelligence that could have been involved, but where, in fact, you’re dealing with a design that is most likely transcendent. Wm. Dembski, Truths That Transcend (D.J. Kennedy) 2/25/02

32 Bacterial flagellum Eukaryotic cilium (flagellum) Vertebrate Clotting Cambrian Explosion Design = Progressive Creationism

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34 “It is true that proponents of intelligent design are quite sophisticated, yet they defend intermittent, supernatural intervention in a way I find both theologically problematic and scientifically untestable.” Ian Barbour, Research News, August, 2002:p. 19

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36 …. whatever scientific evidence there may be against evolution presented in their schools…. Scalia, dissent to Edwards, 1987

37 Santorum Amendment, 2001 It is the sense of the Senate that (1) good science education should prepare students to distinguish the data or testable theories of science from philosophical or religious claims that are made in the name of science; and …

38 Santorum Amendment, 2001 (2) where biological evolution is taught, the curriculum should help students to understand why the subject generates so much continuing controversy, and should prepare the students to be informed participants in public discussions regarding the subject.

39 2002 Education Bill Conference Report, 2002 The conferees recognize that a quality science education should prepare students to distinguish the data and testable theories of science from religious or philosophical claims that are made in the name of science. Where topics are taught that may generate controversy (such as biological evolution) the curriculum should help students to understand the full range of scientific views that exist, why such topics may generate controversy, and how scientific discoveries can profoundly affect society.

40 2002 Education Bill Conference Report, 2002 The conferees recognize that a quality science education should prepare students to distinguish the data and testable theories of science from religious or philosophical claims that are made in the name of science. Where topics are taught that may generate controversy (such as biological evolution) the curriculum should help students to understand the full range of scientific views that exist, why such topics may generate controversy, and how scientific discoveries can profoundly affect society.

41 “After a bitter fight, Santorum’s amendment to the education bill survived virtually unchanged.” Chuck Colson, BreakPoint Online, Oct. 2, 2002

42 Santorum “Language” Ohio HB 481 (2002) Georgia HB 1653 (2002) Kansas SB 168 (2003) Louisiana HR 50 (2003) Minnesota HF 2003 (2004) Alabama HB 352/SB 240 (2005) Georgia HB 179 (2005)

43 Georgia Legislature, 2002 (HB 1563): In recognition of the fact that a quality science education should prepare students to distinguish the data and testable theories of science from philosophical claims that are made in the name of science, the State Board of Education is authorized to promulgate rules and regulations and develop a curriculum for topics that may generate controversy, such as biological evolution, to help students understand the full range of scientific views that exist, why such topics may generate controversy, and how scientific discoveries can profoundly affect society."

44 Students will be made aware of gaps/problems in Darwin’s Theory and of other theories of evolution including, but not limited to, intelligent design. Kitzmiller vs Dover

45 EAE Euphemisms  “both evidence for and evidence against evolution”  “both strengths and weaknesses of evolution  “evolution as theory not fact”  “teach the full range of views about origins  “teach the controversy”

46 Evolution is a “theory in crisis” Evolution and religion are incompatible It is only “fair” to teach creationism with evolution “Pillars of Creationism”

47 CREAT. SCI. ID “Evidence against…” “Weaknesses of…” “Teach the controversy” “Morphing” of individuals

48 Crisis center


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