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MES presents: Jason R. Wiles

Maxwell Auditorium

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 Teaching and Learning about Biological Evolution in the Muslim World Evolutionary theory is overwhelmingly accepted world-wide by the scientific community and considered to be of central importance to an understanding of the life, Earth, and space sciences. Yet, social controversies over the teaching of evolution are common in North America and other Western settings, especially with regard to Christian-based creationism. Little is known in the West, however, about how Muslims have reacted to evolutionary theory, and perhaps even less is known about how evolution is taught in the schools of Islamic societies. This presentation will summarize findings derived from data collected among Muslims via questionnaires and interviews administered to students, teachers and university scientists as well as from reviews of curricular documents during a four-year study of Islamic understandings of and attitudes toward evolution and the teaching thereof. As Islam is a prominent world religion, and as Muslim populations appear to be rapidly growing in the West, it is important to consider how Muslims might think about evolution, which will hopefully facilitate constructive cross-cultural dialogue around science in general.

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