AAAS has played a prominent role in responding to efforts in Kansas, Pennsylvania and elsewhere to weaken or compromise the teaching of evolution in public school science classrooms. Here are some background materials on the controversy and links to AAAS resources on evolution.
|Science: Before “Lucy,” There Was “Ardi”
- AAAS Video Response to “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed” [Real Video]
- AAAS Video on Evolution—From the 2006 Town Hall [Real Video]
- Talking Points / Qs and As for Teachers [PDF]
- Information from AAAS’s Dialogue on Science, Ethics & Religion
- The Evolution Dialogues: Science, Christianity, and the Quest for Understanding
- A Study Guide for The Evolution Dialogues
- Materials from AAAS’s Project 2061
- Evolution on the Front Line: An Abbreviated Guide for Teaching Evolution
- Chapter on “The Living Environment” from Science for All Americans
- Recommendations on basic knowledge about living organisms for students in K-12, from Benchmarks for Science Literacy
- AAAS board resolution on intelligent design
- Historical AAAS resolutions on evolution and creationism
- Full text of the decision by U.S. District Court Judge John E. Jones III in Kitzmiller, et al v. Dover School District, et al. [310 KB PDF]
- Evolution Resources from the National Academies
- Leakey Foundation Schools Program [PDF]—A free program that brings renowned scientists from around the globe into U.S. classrooms to lecture on the latest research in human origins.
Evolution in the News
- “Texas case threatens education and competitiveness nationally“, Peter Agre and Alan I. Leshner, The San Antonio Express News, 23 March 2009
- “Board’s Actions Could Put Students at a Disadvantage,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, Houston Chronicle, 22 October 2008
- “‘Academic Freedom’ Bill Dangerous Distraction,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, Shreveport Times, 28 May 2008
- Letter to Oklahoma Governor Brad Henry, AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, 14 May 2008
- “Anti-Science Law Threatens Tech Jobs of Future,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, New Orleans Times-Picayune, 6 May 2008
- “Statement of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Regarding the Importance of the Integrity of Science as Depicted in Film,” AAAS Statement, 18 April 2008
- “Evolution opponents lose Kansas school board majority,” Monica Davey and Ralph Blumenthal of The New York Times, Austin American-Statesman, 3 August 2006
- “No Conflict Between Science and Religion,” AAAS, 31 July 2006
- “AAAS Urges Defeat of Oklahoma Measure,” AAAS, 22 March 2006
- “Testing Darwin’s Teachers,” Stephanie Simon, Times Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 31 March 2006
- “Science education: Protecting science, religion,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, The Oklahoman, 19 March 2006
- “Intelligent standards or religious design? Keep religion out of science classrooms,” AAAS Board Chair Dr. Gilbert S. Omenn and AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, Detroit Free Press, 8 March 2006
- “Threats to science education hurt religion, too,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner and Baxter M. Wynn, D. Min., First Baptist Church, Greenville, The Greenville News, 7 March 2006
- “Should U.S. Schools Teach ‘Intelligent Design?’ No — Intelligent Design: A Dangerous Distraction,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, Nevada Business Journal, February 2006
- “Let’s teach science in the science classroom,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, Salt Lake Tribune, 28 January 2006
- “If evidence rules in court; only one way case can go,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, The Times-Tribune, 13 October 2005
- “It’s not the Scopes monkey trial II,” AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, York Dispatch, 5 October 2005. Variations of this piece also appeared in the Morning Call of Allentown, Pa., and other newspapers near Dover, PA.
- Video from NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, “Parents: ‘Intelligent design’ is bad education,” 27 September 2005, featuring commentary by AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner
- “Darwin Goes to Church: My Congregation’s Evolutionary Debate,” Henry G. Brinton, Washington Post, Sunday, 18 September 2005; Page B01
- Evolution and Intelligent Design on the Diane Rehm Show, 4 August 2005, with guests AAAS CEO Dr. Alan I. Leshner, Richard Land and Nick Matzke
- “Debating How to Teach Science,” Dr. Leshner, 8 May 2005, Kansas City Star
- “Uma perigosa tendência à censura,” Dr. Leshner, 8 April 2005, O Globo
[26 March 2012]
AAAS expressed strong concerns about a new education bill moving through the Oklahoma Legislature that could confuse students about the core facts of evolution and climate change.
[21 March 2012]
AAAS today reaffirmed strong opposition to Tennessee legislation that would undermine accurate teaching of the established science of evolution, climate change, and other topics.
[24 March 2009]
In a letter to the Texas State Board of Education, AAAS and leading Texas scientists and educators urged rejection of anti-evolution amendments to state science standards.
[14 February 2009]
With help from a dazzling slide show and music from George Harrison and U2, Sean Carroll came to the 2009 AAAS Annual Meeting to celebrate the lives of Charles Darwin, Alfred Russel Wallace, and Henry Walter Bates–explorers from the first golden age of evolutionary biology.
Carroll spun an old-fashioned adventure yarn about the three men, who showed how the astonishing variety of life on Earth could lead to the evolution of new species.
[12 February 2009]
At the Middle School Science Summit on Evolution, co-sponsored by AAAS and the Field Museum, students explored the museum’s halls, delved into its collections, and heard from Charles Darwin himself (or a reasonable facsimilie) on the 200th anniversary of his birth.
Shirley Malcom, head of Education and Human Resources at AAAS, cited surveys showing many American adults don’t believe in human evolution. “If we’re able to introduce the processes by which evolution happens,” explained Malcom, “we can help keep young people’s minds open in later grades.”
No surprise: The museum’s Chilean rose hair tarantulas and Madagascar hissing cockroaches helped engage the kids, too.
[12 February 2009]
With obesity on the rise, a subset of diet gurus will tell you that the best thing to do is eat nuts and berries like our prehistoric ancestors. Researchers at the AAAS Annual Meeting in Chicago are offering a more complex view, though they seem to agree that the evolution of our diet does not match well with our evolution toward a more sedentary lifestyle.
When humans switched from foraging to agriculture, that “greatly decreased the range of foods that we consume,” says Peter Ungar, a professor of anthropology at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. “…The typical American diet is mostly processed flour, fat, and occasionally people throw some tomato sauce on top of it.”
In Ungar’s view, that is not an ideal menu. Richard Alleyne in the Telegraph and Ian Sample in the Guardian picked up the story and gave their readers interesting insight into the evolution of the human diet.
[24 October 2008]
Writing in the Houston Chronicle, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner says efforts by some Texas education leaders to inject religion into science class could hurt the state’s students and economy.
[11 June 2008]
After voicing opposition via newspapers and radio, AAAS also contacted Louisiana lawmakers directly, urging them to keep religion out of public science classrooms.
[29 May 2008]
An anti-evolution bill pending in the Louisiana Legislature poses educational, economic and legal risks for the state, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner writes in the Shreveport Times.
[15 May 2008]
AAAS is urging Oklahoma Governor Brad Henry to veto a bill that would allow students to express religious viewpoints in school. The bill could disrupt science classes, AAAS said.
[6 May 2008]
Two anti-evolution bills pending in the Louisiana Legislature pose economic, educational and legal risks, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner writes in the New Orleans Times-Picayune.
[22 April 2008]
The planet’s 3.5 billion year-history of biological evolution may offer important strategies for responding to modern security threats, ecologist Raphael Sagarin said at a AAAS briefing.
[18 April 2008]
In a new statement, AAAS criticizes a new intelligent design propaganda film for inappropriately pitting religion against science and for demeaning scientists worldwide.
[7 June 2007]
In an op-ed in the Lexington Herald-Leader, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner urged respect for the differences between scientific facts and religious beliefs as a new Creation Museum opens.
[13 August 2006]
In the Akron Beacon-Journal, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner urges voters in Ohio Board of Education races to beware the intelligent design movementis “critical analysis” campaign.
[09 August 2006]
The new book, developed by the Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion, explores the diversity of Christian responses to evolution and the common ground between religion and science.
[22 June 2006]
Groundbreaking Science paper suggests the orb web had a single evolutionary origin and may have been snagging flying insects as early as 136 million years ago.
[15 June 2006]
Spectacular new fossils of a loon-like ancient bird, reported in the new issue of Science, suggest that todayis birds may evolved from aquatic environments.
[28 April 2006]
A biologist and a philosopher speaking at a AAAS lecture offered compelling views on how to defend evolution against advocates of creationism and Intelligent Design.
[30 March 2006]
In a lecture at AAAS, the Rev. George V. Coyne, director of the Vatican Observatory, offers a compelling scientific and religious critique of Intelligent Design.
[22 March 2006]
In a letter to Oklahoma elected officials and an op-ed published in the stateis biggest newspaper, AAAS says education bill would open science classes to intelligent design doctrine.
[8 March 2006]
Writing in The Greenville (S.C.) News, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner and the Rev. Baxter M. Wynne say a proposed change in South Carolina teaching on evolution could be harmful.
[20 February 2006]
The Rev. George Coyne, the Vatican’s astronomer, was among a stellar AAAS panel that met with teachers in St. Louis to discuss evolution, religion and scientific integrity.
[19 February 2006]
The world’s largest general science organization denounces anti-evolution measures as hundreds of K-12 teachers convene for ‘Evolution on the Front Line’ event in St. Louis.
[3 February 2006]
Speaking at AAAS, NASA astrobiologist Andrew Pohorille discusses his efforts to understand the earliest chemical interactions that may have produced life.
[30 January 2006]
Writing in the Salt Lake Tribune, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner says a Utah measure targeting evolution education poses a risk to coming generations of scientists and engineers.
[22 December 2005]
Research that traces the workings of evolution claims top honors as Science Breakthrough of the Year. In all, the journal named 10 top S&T advances—and one breakdown—for 2005.
[20 December 2005]
Alan I. Leshner, CEO of AAAS and executive publisher of the journal Science, responds to the decision by a U.S. District Court in Kitzmiller, et al. v. Dover School District, et al.
[16 November 2005]
An audience at AAAS hears of the scientific advances in designing and building living systems—and of ethical and environmental concerns related to this cutting-edge research.
[9 November 2005]
The vote by the Kansas State Board of Education to change its science standards and redefine science has troubling implications for schools and students, says AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner.
[28 October 2005]
In a lecture at AAAS, Christoph Adami described how generations of rapidly proliferating digital “organisms” evolve traits that appear to be irreducibly complex.
[27 October 2005]
With state school officials in Kansas set to approve misleading science standards, AAAS endorses action by two science groups to deny use of their copyrighted material in the standards.
[17 October 2005]
With anti-evolution advocates trying to inject “intelligent design” into science classrooms, a AAAS program aimed at improving science literacy and setting standards is more important now than ever.
[7 October 2005]
Writing in the York (Penn.) Dispatch, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner cautions that a landmark evolution trial now underway should not be seen as a battle of science vs. religion.
[22 September 2005]
AAAS and the National Center for Science Education said it is important for a federal court to reject efforts by the Dover, Pa. school board to insert an anti-evolution doctrine into biology classrooms.
[13 September 2005]
In remarks before the Kansas State Board of Education, AAAS Fellow John Staver warned that the board’s attacks on evolution would ultimately hurt the state’s students.
[22 July 2005]
Exactly 80 years after the climactic event of the famous Scopes “Monkey Trial,” long-lost photos shown at a AAAS seminar helped bring the historic milestone to life.
[30 June 2005]
In a EurekAlert! online chat, specialists say proponents of “intelligent design” seek to undermine fundamental methods of scientific inquiry.
[9 May 2005]
As Kansas officials hear testimony on intelligent design, the AAAS CEO says science and religion can co-exist in life, but they should not be presented together in science classrooms.
[27 April 2005]
Speakers at the AAAS Forum on Science and Technology Policy consider strategies for addressing the campaign mounted by faith-based opponents of evolution science.
[12 April 2005]
In a letter to Kansas school board officials, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner declined an invitation to the state’s controversial hearing, saying there’s no need to debate the facts of evolution.
[29 March 2005]
In a letter sent Monday, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner urged 410 members of the Association of Science and Technology Centers to stand firm against anti-evolution film critics.
[2 February 2005]
Writing in the Philadelphia Inquirer, AAAS CEO Alan I. Leshner argues that “intelligent design” theory is a matter of faith and so should be kept out of science classrooms.