Professors Weigh in on Evolution

From an AAUP press release sent today, June 17:

Faculty Association Speaks Out on Three Top Issues

Washington, D.C.? In Washington, D.C. last Saturday, the annual meeting of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) adopted resolutions on three issues of concern to faculty and others in the academic community. The resolutions address the right of graduate student employees to choose representation by a collective bargaining agent, concern over increased attacks on the academic freedom of teachers and scholars across the nation, and the teaching of evolution.


Teaching Evolution: The theory of evolution is all but universally accepted in the community of scholars and has contributed immeasurably to our understanding of the natural world. The Ninety-first Annual Meeting of the American Association of University Professors deplores efforts in local communities and by some state legislators to require teachers in public schools to treat evolution as merely a hypothesis or speculation, untested and unsubstantiated by the methods of science, and to require them to make students aware of an ?intelligent-design hypothesis? to account for the origins of life. These initiatives not only violate the academic freedom of public school teachers, but can deny students an understanding of the overwhelming scientific consensus regarding evolution.

The implications of these efforts for higher education are particularly troubling to this Meeting. To the degree that college and university faculty in the field of biology would be required to offer instruction about evolution and the origins of life that complied with these restrictions and was at variance with their own understanding of scientific evidence, their freedom to determine what may be taught and how would be seriously abridged.

This Meeting calls on local communities and state officials to reject proposals that seek to suppress discussion of evolution in our public schools as inimical to principles of academic freedom.

For more information about this resolution, please contact Jonathan Knight at 202-737-5900, ext. 3023 or

In addition, the AAUP journal, Academe, recently published an article, “Wedging Creationism into the Academy,” by Barbara Forrest and Glenn Branch. The article may be found at