Understanding Darwinism (Gen Ed 1004)





How has our understanding of evolution evolved since Darwin?


Histories, Societies, Individuals icon with textScience & Technology in Society icon with text

Andrew Berry and Janet Browne

How does scientific knowledge develop, how is it shaped by history, and what effect does it have on society? An interdisciplinary exploration of Darwin's ideas and their impact on science and society, this course links the history of Darwin's ideas with the key features of modern evolutionary biology. We review the development of the main elements of the theory of evolution, highlighting the areas in which Darwin's ideas have proved remarkably robust and areas in which subsequent developments have significantly modified the theory. Assignments will include a project that allows you to explore your own DNA. We will explore the theological implications of evolution, why evolution is challenged by creationists, and what role the scientific consensus plays in a society mainly composed of non-scientists. By also analyzing the historical context of the development of evolutionary thought beyond Darwin, the course emphasizes the dynamic interplay between science and society.

Register for Gen Ed 1004