The interaction of Science and Religion in Education

The main purpose of this investigation is to find out what kind(s) of relationship exist between the ways in which secondary-school students with faith backgrounds think about the interaction on science and religion and their motivation in pursuing scientific careers. Science education is now a major international concern for its potential to enhance quality of life, society and the economy. Research in science education, especially in UK, has point out the relevance in taking into account elements such as diversity, culture and the cross-disciplinary dimension in the science education system. The interaction between science and religion beliefs in secondary school plays an important part in this new way to encourage a culture of science. The Learning about Science and Religion (LASAR) Project in collaboration with institutions such as the Faraday Institute, St Edmunds’s College, has sought to understand this interaction from two complementary directions: research to find out more about exactly what secondary age students do think about science and religion, with the factors which they feel influence their views; and how their ideas shift over time. I expect to joint some of the LASAR researchers in a new Faraday Institute project about the interactions between science and religious belief in the secondary school context in England, and find out how this interaction could promote or undermine science education.

This research is relevant in Latin America due to the highly religious context and the low interest among school students in pursuing scientific careers. Hopefully this investigation might give insights into how to undertake similar social science research in Latin America and how to use the results to encourage new science education curricula that allow the flourishing of science from a pluralistic point of view.

Host University
St Edmund’s College, University of Cambridge, UK

Academic Sponsor
Prof Keith S. Taber

Autumn 2016 and Winter 2017