So many people are exploring the relationship between religion and science in interesting ways – consequently, this list could be very long. As such, I have only included resources that have been recommended by colleagues, or considered in the process of compiling the 36th Issue of Dialogue Australasia journal themed around Religion and Science (November 2016).
I encourage you to contribute your own recommendations in the Comments section.
- Graham Buxton, Chris Mulherin, Mark Worthing, God and Science: In Classroom and Pulpit (Mosaic Press, 2012)
- Terry Kelly, Stars, Life and Intelligence – Being a Darwinian and a Believer (ATF Press, 2009)
- Terry Kelly, Reason and Religion in an Age of Science (ATF Press, 2007)
This text was developed for a course delivered to senior school students at St Ignatius College, SA, where Fr Kelly has taught for 40 years. It attempts to acquaint students with the methodology of science, and seeks to facilitate an appreciation of some of the findings of modern cosmology. The book contains a CD with over 200 PPTs divided into chapters corresponding to chapters in the book, which can be used by teachers & students.
- John Polkinghorne, Science and Creation: The Search for Understanding (Templeton Press, 2006)
This is a set text for the Cambridge International Examination’s PreU course, and an excellent book for senior students.
- Michael Poole, User’s Guide to Science and Belief, (Lion Books, 2007)
- Christopher Southgate et.al, eds, God, Humanity and the Cosmos: Textbook in Science and Religion (Trinity Press, 1999)
A highly comprehensive and accessible overview of the conversations in religion and science – useful for teachers and senior students. An online adaption of this text can be accessed at: http://www.counterbalance.org/ghc/index-frame.html
- Keith Ward, The Big Questions in Science and Religion (Templeton Foundation Press, 2008)
Addresses ten major questions in the field in a non-dogmatic way, but one that is sympathetic to many religious beliefs. A special feature of the book is the way it considers a number of religious traditions, and how they are affected by scientific discoveries.
- Keith Ward, Divine Action (Templeton Foundation Press, 2008)
Can we give any account of how God acts in the world? Seen by many as the chief problem of the philosophy of theism, the book attempts some sort of answer.
SECONDARY RESOURCES – ONLINE
*Big Questions Online: features essays by leading thinkers and author-led discussions of each essay. Topics include:
- Chris Impey, What is a Buddhist perspective on Scientific Discoveries about the nature of the Universe?
- Celia Deane-Drummond: ‘What can evolutionary biology contribute to theology, and vice-versa?’
- Don Howard, Can machines become moral?
FaradaySchools is produced by the LASAR (Learning about Science and Religion) Project at the University of Reading and the Faraday Institute for Science and Religion, St Edmund’s College, Cambridge. The website contains a wealth of curriculum materials and approaches which can support teachers in engaging primary and senior students in the area of science and religion.
The termly Faraday Public Lecture in Cambridge is given on some aspect of science and religion by an internationally recognised speaker. Whilst academically rigorous, the lectures are accessible to a multidisciplinary audience. There is an extensive lecture archive.
Gresham College, Oxford has been providing free public lectures within the City of London for over 400 years. There are now over 1,900 lectures freely available online in text, audio or video formats. Lecture series include:
Alister McGrath: Science, Faith & God: The Big Questions
Templeton Big Questions Series conducted amongst leading scholars and scientists includes questions such as:
- Does evolution explain human nature?
- Does science make belief in God obsolete?
- Does the universe has a purpose?
*Science & Belief: The Big Issues (12 Videos & Teaching Notes)
Professor Russell Stannard, Emeritus Professor of Physics at the Open University and licensed lay minister in the Church of England, discusses the major questions and controversies concerning science and belief.
- There are 12 x 10 minute videos available on YouTube. Nine of the episodes begin with young people expressing their views on a contentious topic including: Creationism, Intelligent Design, The Galileo trial, Miracles, The Anthropic Principle, Freud, Jung, Memes, Extra-terrestrial Intelligence.
- The video presentations are supported by a set of notes for teachers (written by Lat Baylock of RE Today Services) to assist discussion and follow on activity with exam level secondary school students.
The Test of FAITH film explores the relationship between science and religion, and the generally perceived idea that they are in conflict. Scientist-believers discuss how they fit their faith and professional science work together. Science and Religion Meet is a series of lessons based on the film.
* The Big Questions (1995) and More Big Questions (2002) – Paul Davies in conversation with Philip Adams: www.abc.net.au/science/bigquestions/
Topics discussed include: In the beginning, The Creative Cosmos, In Search of a Theory of Everything, What does it all Mean? Science and Truth, Does God play Dice? Einstein’s Legacy, Cosmic Butterflies
Published since 1966, Zygon is dedicated to the manifold interactions between the sciences and human religious and moral convictions. Articles address ethical issues and analyze the history of the differentiation between science and religion and their subsequent interactions. The online archive contains articles from the last 50 years.
PRIMARY RESOURCES – ONLINE
- Begin to Wonder: 6 cross-curricular lessons that encourage early primary pupils to wonder at the world they live in and ask questions about how and why it exists.
- Examining Worldviews: assists senior primary students to explore Christian, Hindu, Humanist and Islamic explanations of our Origins.
UNIT OUTLINES (require current password to download)
* Yr 5 Religion and Science Unit (Philippa Lohmeyere-Collins, Mentone Girls’ Grammar, VIC)
* Middle School Science & Religion Unit (Eleanor O’Donnell – formerly Wadhurst, Melbourne Grammar School, VIC)
*Yr 11-12 Philosophy, Science & Religion Unit (Simon Bennett, St Michael’s Collegiate, TAS)
ETHICSONLINE FILMS & TEACHERS NOTES
There are now 8 titles in the EO film series which come with teachers’ notes, scripts and classroom activities. Films include: Environmental Ethics, War & Peace, Sex & Ethics, Abortion, The Problem of Evil, Life after Death and Ethical Theory I & II.
‘I have taught senior school aged students for 17 years in England and Australia and during this time I have not found a better resource to complement the teaching of these topics.. up to date, thoroughly researched, visually engaging and uncluttered in presentation. Each separate DVD resource contains a number of short video clips, typically running for 10-20 minutes. The content is deliberately confronting and this engages students. The fact that each topic is broken down into short clips aids teaching. It gives teachers an opportunity to spend a few lessons covering each topic in depth as you can pause for discussion and work between clips. In addition to the video clips the package includes additional resources, such as the script in full.’
Dominic Hodnett Head of Philosophy, Christ Church Grammar School, Perth, Western Australia