Evolution versus creationism: a matter of acceptance versus belief

Williams, James D (2015) Evolution versus creationism: a matter of acceptance versus belief. Journal of Biological Education, 49 (3). pp. 322-333. ISSN 0021-9266

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Scientists are often challenged about their ‘belief’ in evolution. Many creationists try to convince people that evolution is more of a ‘faith-based’ position or belief system than ‘real science’. This article examines the notion of acceptance versus belief and the relationship between knowledge, understanding and belief. It argues that adopting the acceptance of evolution over belief in evolution will help teachers deal with the challenges that inevitably arise in lessons on evolution in high school. Studies in philosophy show beliefs are often held without evidence, may be illogical and are difficult to change. Acceptance of a scientific explanation for a natural phenomenon, however, is based on evidence and allows for a change in disposition should new evidence come to light. With this in mind, removing the idea of ‘belief’ in evolution and talking about acceptance provides a sensible way to manage talk of creationism versus evolution, if and when it arises in the classroom.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Evolution, Creationism, Acceptance and Belief, Philosophy of Science
Schools and Departments: School of Education and Social Work > Education
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1603 Secondary education. High schools
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1705 Education and training of teachers and administrators
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH0301 Biology > QH0359 Evolution
Depositing User: James Williams
Date Deposited: 27 Jan 2015 13:50
Last Modified: 08 Mar 2021 12:30
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/52502

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