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New Course: Life Sciences and the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ

The College of Life Sciences introduces a new course to help students better understand the gospel's relevance to questions and issues they will encounter in the sciences.

Students in a class lecture

How does science fit into my faith? Where and how might Adam and Eve fit into evolution? How does free will line up with the knowledge of personal traits encoded in our DNA? These are questions students, faculty, and alumni in the life sciences may consider. The challenge comes in finding a reliable source to help answer these probing questions.

A new course offered by the BYU College of Life Sciences aims to help answer these types of questions. The 2-credit course, Life Sciences and the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ (MMBIO 551R: Current Topics in Microbiology and Molecular Biology), will fulfill elective credit hours that can be applied toward majors in the College of Life Sciences. Based on the success of the course during winter semester, students may receive required university religion credit hours in future semesters.

Life Sciences and the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ is designed to help students better understand the gospel’s relevance to questions and issues they will encounter in the sciences. They will learn how to find intellectually honest and faithful ways to reconcile gospel teachings with scientific methodologies, theories, and evidence. Students who apply themselves in this course will develop a clear understanding of issues related to both the life sciences and the restored gospel of Jesus Christ – two legitimate, complementary methodologies, both of which help us better understand God, His work, and His purposes.

Professor Andrew H. Hedges from Religious Education and Professor Julianne Grose from the College of Life Sciences will oversee the course. They understand the importance of asking questions and searching for answers based in truth.

Grose expressed how enlightening the process of discovering God in science has been in her own life: “I see the beauty behind how I believe that God may have created the Earth, man, and living organisms. The fact that He would use living organisms to create at least some aspects of the Earth is completely in line with the God that I know; He loves living things and uses life to further other life.”

The course will be discussion-based and draw upon the expertise of guest lecturers on topics such as Adam and Eve and pre-Adamic life, evolution, the purpose of life, and environmental stewardship. Although the course is not designed to draw direct conclusions on every topic, students will be equipped with the resources they need to approach difficult questions with a broader perspective.

This course can be found in the university class catalog under MMBIO 551R: Current Topics in Microbiology and Molecular Biology (which is really Life Sciences and the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ), and it will be offered Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:00-9:50 a.m.