By Kirbi Cochran, Message Staff Writer
PINEVILLE (LBM) – Louisiana College professor Wade Warren wants to provide Louisiana’s science teachers with the necessary stepping stones to begin teaching a more complete curriculum on evolutionary biology.
So he is writing a book, “Education Standards and Evolution.”
Warren, who holds a doctorate in zoology with an emphasis in neuroscience, specializes in anatomy, physiology and teaches a master’s degree course on the significance of teaching.
“The teachers don’t know their rights – what they can and cannot do. So, my book is a launching pad for them to be informed,” he told the Baptist Message.
Warren’s book will provide teachers with a simple framework for lessons that will allow them to teach evolution from a perspective that includes contradicting information.
He said many teachers in Louisiana are not aware of the large gaps in evolutionary theory, and that they also are unaware of the freedom, guaranteed by law, to expose these gaps to their students by presenting opposing research.
In June 2008, Louisiana enacted the Louisiana Science Education Act, which allows teachers to use supplemental information that presents an opposing view to information provided in the curriculum. The law was enacted to ensure students received a fully-orbed view of a subject.
Moreover, it is included in the Louisiana Science Standards.
Warren said this law is extremely important because many middle school and high school materials tend to present the theory of evolution as unopposed fact. Yet many of the ideas included in this theory cannot be fully proven and even greatly disputed among scientists, he pointed out.
Warren said teachers are protected by law to be able to provide students with opposing views that will cause them to think critically and figure out the truth for themselves.
“Good teachers don’t tell their students what to think,” said Warren. “Good teachers present evidence and let students make up their own minds.”
Warren’s book, which is scheduled to be published in November, provides teachers with explanations of the standards and key wording with literature citations, as well as a model for presenting students the opposing views on Darwinian evolution.
Various evolutionary topics covered in the work include the fossil record, DNA sequencing, embryology, and common ancestry. The book provides teachers with all of the necessary sources to properly present both sides of the argument.
This teaching method allows students to build vital critical thinking skills that will help them greatly in the future, he said. “Students will learn to not just absorb everything that they are told but to truly think about and research the information that they are consuming daily.”
“Let’s go where the evidence takes us,” he continued. “Because the evidence today is suggesting that the Darwinian model is failing and that life itself was intentionally designed.”