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The Evolution of Creationism

Critically Appraising Intelligent Design



Author:

Robin Pals-Rylaarsdam
College of Arts and Sciences
Saint Xavier University
rylaarsdam@sxu.edu

Abstract:

This PBL case on Intelligent Design was written for freshman biology majors at a Christian liberal arts college. Students read about the claims and actions of proponents of Intelligent Design as they work for its inclusion in the high school science curriculum. In the process, students learn about the nature of science and the importance of evolution in the field of biology. More advanced students are given the task of critically evaluating one specific (and much cited) claim made by Intelligent Design supporters that the irreducible complexity of the bacterial flagellum suggests it cannot be the product of evolution.

Objectives:
  • Investigate and report the claims and criticisms of Intelligent Design (ID).
  • Read about the actions of ID proponents as they work for inclusion of ID in high school science curricula.
  • Review the nature and limits of science.
  • Describe the importance of evolution in the field of biology.
  • (Advanced option) Critically evaluate one specific ID claim: that the irreducible complexity of the bacterial flagellum suggests that it cannot be the product of evolution.
Keywords: Intelligent design; creationism; evolution; irreducible complexity; bacterial flagellum; science curriculum
Topical Area: Pseudoscience, Scientific argumentation
Educational Level: Undergraduate lower division, Undergraduate upper division, General public & informal education, Faculty development
Formats: PDF
Type/Method: Problem-Based Learning
Language: English
Subject Headings: Evolutionary Biology   Biology (General)   Science (General)   Science Education   Teacher Education  
Date Posted: 11/08/05
Date Modified: N/A
Copyright: Copyright held by the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science, University at Buffalo, State University of New York. Please see our usage guidelines, which outline our policy concerning permissible reproduction of this work.

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