© 2019

Science and Religion in Education

  • Berry Billingsley
  • Keith Chappell
  • Michael J. Reiss

Part of the Contemporary Trends and Issues in Science Education book series (CTISE, volume 48)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. Berry Billingsley, Keith Chappell, Michael J. Reiss
    Pages 1-11
  3. Beyond Barbour

  4. Beyond Bare Statistics

  5. Beyond Chalk and Talk

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 221-221

About this book


This book brings together the latest research in education in relation to science and religion. Leading international scholars and practitioners provide vital insights into the underlying debates and present a range of practical approaches for teaching. Key themes include the origin of the universe, the theory of evolution, the nature of the human person, the nature of science and Artificial Intelligence. These are explored in a range of international contexts. The book provides a valuable resource for teachers, students and researchers in the fields of education, science, religious education and the growing specialist field of science and religion.

Science and Religion in Education is a compelling read for current and future generations of academic researchers and teachers who wish to explore the fascinating intersect between science education and religious studies. The research findings and insights presented by these international scholars offer new dimensions on contemporary practice.

- Vaille Dawson, Professor of Science Education, University of Western Australia

Science and Religion in Education offers a fascinating and diverse collection of chapters surveying the current state of thinking about how science and religion can be understood in education. The book offers a wealth of thought-provoking material for anyone interested in the natures of science and religion, their relationship(s), or their representation within the curriculum.

- Professor Keith Taber, University of Cambridge

Science education and religious education are uncomfortable bedfellows. This book, written in part as a response to the – perhaps too clear – accounts of Ian Barbour, provides suitably nuanced pictures of how science and religion are dealt with in schools. Whatever the views of specialists, young people ‘receive’ an education in both science and religion: hearing their voices is refreshing in such a serious academic account.

- Julian Stern, Professor of Education and Religion, York St John University

Humans have long endeavored to make sense of the world often using science and religion. Yet, these two great traditions are frequently seen as incompatible. This useful volume features thoughtful contributions from experts whose work straddles the divide and provides educators with arguments, engaging strategies and historical perspectives to help build a bridge and allow a fruitful discussion in schools.

- William F. McComas, Distinguished Professor of Science Education, University of Arkansas

Equal parts critical examination of existing models for the relationship between science and religion, scholarly exposition of newer models, and insights toward practical application in classrooms, this book is an invaluable resource for science and religion educators. If you have been thinking it is time we looked beyond Barbour’s taxonomy, you will want to read this book. If you have not, I implore you to read this book.

- Jason Wiles, Associate Professor of Biology and Science Education, Syracuse University


creation evolution faith values ideology origins of the universe laws of nature religious education origins of mankind Science Education Nature of Science science and religion epistemic insight controversial issues

Editors and affiliations

  • Berry Billingsley
    • 1
  • Keith Chappell
    • 2
  • Michael J. Reiss
    • 3
  1. 1.LASAR (Learning about Science and Religion)Canterbury Christ Church UniversityCanterburyUK
  2. 2.LASAR (Learning about Science and Religion)Canterbury Christ Church UniversityCanterburyUK
  3. 3.Institute of EducationUniversity College LondonLondonUK

About the editors

Berry Billingsley is Professor of Science Education and leads the LASAR (Learning about Science and Religion) research team at Canterbury Christ Church University. Her interests include students' ideas about the nature of science and more broadly, developing strategies to support the development of epistemic insight, young people's engagement in science, artificial intelligence, Big Questions bridging science, religion and the wider humanities and the communication of science and technology news in the media. Equipped with a physics degree, Berry's first career was with the BBC where she produced and presented television and radio programmes including BBC World Service's 'Science in Action', BBC TV's 'Tomorrow’s World' and BBC Education's 'Search out Science'. She then travelled to Australia, to become a senior project manager with the Department of Education. She regularly publishes in science education.

Keith Chappell is Research Fellow in the Learning About Science and Religion team at the Canterbury Christ Church University. He has previously taught biological sciences at the University of Reading and the University of Derby. As well his interests in biology he writes in the field of theology and religious studies, having been a Las Casas scholar at Blackfriars Hall, Oxford studying Christian social teaching. He is a visiting lecturer at the Maryvale Institute, Birmingham and Liverpool Hope University. He is also a theological advisor to the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales. In addition to science and religion he is engaged in research in the sociology of religion and the philosophy of biology.

Michael J Reiss is Professor of Science Education at UCL Institute of Education, Visiting Professor at the Universities of Kiel, York and the Royal Veterinary College, Honorary Fellow of the British Science Association and of the College of Teachers, Docent at the University of Helsinki, a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences and a Priest in the Church of England. He is President of the International Society for Science & Religion and of the International Association for Science and Religion in Schools and has research and consultancy interests in science education, bioethics and sex education.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Science and Religion in Education
  • Editors Berry Billingsley
    Keith Chappell
    Michael J. Reiss
  • Series Title Contemporary Trends and Issues in Science Education
  • Series Abbreviated Title Cont.Trends,Iss.Sci.Educ.
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Education Education (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-030-17233-6
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-030-17236-7
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-030-17234-3
  • Series ISSN 1878-0482
  • Series E-ISSN 1878-0784
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XI, 353
  • Number of Illustrations 27 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Science Education
    Religion and Education
    Philosophy of Education
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


“The whole volume offers a transformative framework for science and religion to flourish in education, and I heartily agree. I hope it finds its way on to reading lists for trainees … . this is a field-leading contribution to science and religion studies and practice that will only be surpassed through the continuing exercise of interdisciplinary teamwork of the same excellent quality.” (Stephen Thompson, Science & Christian Belief, Vol. 33 (1), 2021)