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Lecture

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School
University of Waterloo
Department
Biology
Course
BIOL 359
Professor
Jonathan Witt
Semester
Winter

Description
bLecture 1: Science: From National Academy of Sciences 1. FACT: observation that has been repeatedly confirmed and for all practical purposes is accepted as “true” • Truth is science, is never final : may be modified or even discarded tomorrow 2. A Scientific Hypothesis: A tentative statement about the natural world leading to deductions or predictions that can be tested • If the deductions are incorrect, the original hypothesis is abandoned or modified 3. Law: a descriptive generalization about how some aspect of the natural world behave under specified circumstances • Eg; the second law of thermodynamics  The Goal of Science: a well substantiated explanation of some aspects of the natural world that incorporate facts, laws, and tested hypotheses. Misconceptions About Science and Evolution: 1) Does Science Tell us that God Cannot Exist:  Science has nothing to say about the existence of GOD or spirituality 2) Some people state they have faith in Science and Evolution:  Science is not a faith, which is by definition acceptance in the absence of evidence 3) Some people claim that they theory of evolution justifies immorality and unethical behavior  Science does not directly inform us about questions concerning morality and ethics  Naturalistic Fallacy: the way that things are is the way that they should be  Science informs us about the way the natural world is, not about the way it should be Intelligent Design Theory: • An alternative scientific theory to explain biological origins and complexity o Presupposes that any complex structure must be the result of an intelligent designer • Holds that biological complexity apparent in nature cannot be explained by Darwinian evolution and is consistent with intelligent design ; implies life on Earth was the product of an unidentified intelligent force • Promoted by the Discovery Institute and Center for Cultural Renewal as a scientific alternative to Darwinian Evolution • Critics; ID is merely creationism; a literal reading of the Bible’s story of creation camouflages in scientific language The Development of ID theory: • William Paley ( 1802): proposed natural theology o Evidences of the existence and attributes of the Deity, Collected from the Appearances of Nature • Michael Behe; Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute and Center for Cultural Renewal o Author of Darwin’s Black Box; the biochemical challenge to evolution o Defined Irreducible complexity as ; a single system composed of several well matched, interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, wherein the removal of any one part causes the system to effectively cease functioning  the so called linchpi
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