Science for Seminaries Resources

Curricular resources from the Science for Seminaries project have been developed by partner institutions and a series of educational science videos has been produced by AAAS for classroom use. Project resources are searchable by topic, resource type, ecclesial family, seminary, and core curriculum area. Use the filtering tool at right to explore the archive. For more information about curricular resources, please contact the school(s) that produced those resources.

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Humans in a Vast Universe: Astronomy and Cosmic Significance

As we study the vast expanse of the universe, we are encountered with knowledge about origins and the expanding universe which shapes our understanding of where humanity fits into the story of the world. The perspective of looking outward at our galaxy and the estimated 400 billion galaxies beyond ours, evokes a sense of awe and stimulates inquisitive minds to ask bigger philosophical questions. This short film discusses the topics of our connection with the universe, the expanding nature of the universe, and the existence of exoplanets.

  • Course Categories: Biblical Studies, Church History, Ethics, General Theology, Pastoral Theology
  • Science Topics: Physics and Cosmos
  • Tags:
    astronomy, Space exploration, science and religion, Dr. David Charbonneau, space and exploration: Humans in a vast universe, big bang, energy and matter, origins of universe, Dr. Jennifer Wiseman, Dr. Guy Consolmagno

What are exoplanets and how do we find them?

How are new planets discovered? How are new planets quantified in terms of size, mass, density, material, temperature, etc.? In this short film, Dr. David Charbonneau provides an explanation for how inferences are made to determine planetary qualities, and how the use of innovative scientific methods in astronomy allows us to discover and evaluate new planets that we are unable to see directly.

  • Course Categories: Biblical Studies, Church History, Ethics, General Theology, Pastoral Theology
  • Science Topics: Physics and Cosmos
  • Tags:
    astronomy, science and religion, How we discover exoplanets, stars, wobble method, doppler method, Dr. David Charbonneau

To Be Human: Genetics, Origins, and Identity

What does it mean to be human? We often strive to understand our uniqueness in this world by evaluating differences between ourselves and other living organisms. Instead, could it be more productive to observe the similarities that exist between species and understand who we are in light of common ancestry? Paleontology, modern genetics, and the fossil record provides a narrative of our journey to becoming human and allows us to piece together various discoveries to provide a greater understanding of who we are as humans. Modern genetics provides powerful technological tools to assist scientists in building a historical timeline of human origins. The story of our journey to becoming human has the potential to tear down walls of division and give reason to celebrate the unity and diversity of human beings.

  • Course Categories: General Theology
  • Science Topics: Life Sciences
  • Tags:
    genetics, Anthropology, science and religion, biology, To Be Human, common ancestry, becoming human, homo sapiens, Dr. Frans de Waal, Dr. Georgia Dunston, Dr. Richard B. Potts

The Workings of Science

Discussions surrounding the various scientific disciplines don’t often encompass aspects of faith. However, scientific inquiry is predicated on ideas of faith that the universe can, in fact, be understood. Can science answer all possible questions of the universe completely? There is a tendency to view questions about the universe with the notion that the end goal is to somehow simply finish science with final answers and reach a point of completion. Perhaps a more appropriate view of scientific research involves the discovery of novel questions that have not been asked before and exploring them with curiosity. This short film provides insight into a scientist’s approach to observing the universe and the misconceptions surrounding their methods and results.

  • Course Categories: General Theology
  • Science Topics: History & Philosophy of Science
  • Tags:
    astronomy, physics, The Workings of Science, science and religion, scientific method, natural world, Dr. Melinda Baldwin, Dr. Sylvester James Gates Jr., Dr. Michael Ruse

Intro to Christian Ethics

This introductory course, taught by Thandeka at Andover Newton Seminary, gives students a spectrum of theological, biblical, and neuroscientific resources for studying ethical reflections in the Christian West. The course pays particular attention to the ethical reflections of four formative figures in the Christian tradition -Paul, Augustine, Martin Luther, and Friedrich Schleiermacher.

  • Course Categories: Ethics
  • Science Topics: Neuroscience, Brain, & Mind
  • Seminaries: Andover Newton Theological School
  • Syllabus: Intro to Christian Ethics
  • Tags:
    Christian Ethics, neuroscience, ethics, science and religion, theology and science, brain and mind, mainline protestant

Theology and Emotions

This seminar, taught by Thandeka at Andover Newton Seminary, uses movies, music, theater, liturgical theory, affective neuroscientific research and affective theological studies to retrieve the lost emotional foundation of liberal faith. Students use insights gained from this multidisciplinary work to create an in-class presentation of a new liturgical strategy that can uplift the heart of liberal faith in Christian services.

  • Course Categories: General Theology
  • Science Topics: Neuroscience, Brain, & Mind
  • Seminaries: Andover Newton Theological School
  • Syllabus: Theology and Emotions
  • Tags:
    neuroscience, theology, pastoral theology, psychology, mainline protestant, theology and emotions, andover newton

Systematic Theology II

This course, taught by Mark Heim at Andover Newton Seminary, is the second semester of a two semester exposition and exploration of Christian theology. It deals with major Christian doctrines, their meaning, coherence, and interpretation.

  • Course Categories: General Theology
  • Science Topics: History & Philosophy of Science
  • Seminaries: Andover Newton Theological School
  • Syllabus: Systematic Theology II
  • Tags:
    history of science, theology, eschayology, systematic theology, mainline protestant, doctrine

Torah and Prophets: Exodus – 2 Kings

This course studies the Old Testament as Christian Scripture by examining Exodus through 2 Kings with a focus on the women and men who formed and preserved Israel. The prophets and prophetic books that relate to this period will also be read and interpreted.

  • Course Categories: Biblical Studies
  • Science Topics: Life Sciences, Physics and Cosmos
  • Syllabus: Torah and Prophets
  • Tags:
    evolution, cosmology, Hebrew Bible, torah and prophes, life sciences, biblical studies, evangelical, conservative protestant

Thinking and Interpreting Theologically

This course, taught by Patrick S. Franklin at Providence Theological Seminary, aims to expand students’ competence in biblical interpretation and theological reflection. Students will develop a deeper understanding of theological study as formative spiritual discipline essential to shaping the mind and heart for ministry praxis and cultural engagement. Within this framework, students will consider historical and contemporary approaches to biblical interpretation, analysis of trends in contemporary church and culture, and theological tensions affecting the church and its mission in North America and other parts of the world.

  • Course Categories: General Theology
  • Science Topics: History & Philosophy of Science, Life Sciences
  • Syllabus: Thinking and Interpreting Theologically
  • Tags:
    evolution, history of science, Philosophy of Science, science and religion, Social Sciences, evangelical, conservative protestant, general theology

Theology and Cosmology

This course, taught at St. Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology, will explore the significance of developing a properly theological interpretation of modern cosmology.

  • Course Categories: General Theology
  • Science Topics: Life Sciences, Physics and Cosmos
  • Syllabus: Theology and Cosmology
  • Tags:
    evolution, theology, cosmology, quantum mechanics, life sciences, theology and cosmology, catholic, orthodox


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In furtherance of the AAAS mission of advancing science in service to society, AAAS|DoSER’s role in the Science for Seminaries project is to support efforts to integrate science into seminary education. AAAS|DoSER does not advise on or endorse the theological content of the participating seminaries.