Origins: Science, Faith, and Philosophy
University Honors 302-003
Spring Semester 2004
This class will consider the roles of science, faith, and philosophy in questions touching on cosmological and biological origins. We will discuss the difference between the methodology of science and philosophical positions. The arguments of proponents of intelligent design and the counter arguments of naturalists will be considered. We will survey important observations in the major fields related to origins, and consider whether the results of scientific inquiry to date lend more support to design or naturalism. We will discuss how this question impacts our society, whether our society should allow open debate, and who should participate in that debate. We will consider whether science can operate effectively with an open view on this subject, and the potential negative impacts of philosophical or religious presuppositions on the integrity of science. A goal is to enable participants to formulate their own views based on a knowledge of the data and critical thinking, and to become knowledgeable participants in the debate. The course will include analyses of audio and video lectures and debates, along with newspaper and magazine articles and books. The format of the course is lecture/discussion.
Term paper topics
Origin of Life