Frequently Asked Questions
What is the "Good Science, Good Faith" course?
"Good Science, Good Faith" is a one-year, self-paced high school science apologetics curriculum. It should be used in conjunction with, not as a substitute for, a traditional science curriculum. It has been designed to integrate information high school students have learned in their biology, chemistry, physics, and geology courses with the Christian worldview.
What's the difference between the "Good Science, Good Faith" course and Reasons Institute?
The "Good Science, Good Faith" course is a condensed version of the "Creation and the Bible," "Creation vs. Evolution" and "Astronomy and Design" courses that are part of Reasons Institute. In fact, they share many of the same lectures. The main difference is that the workloads are reduced and the assigned textbooks are more appropriate for high school students. If parents/teachers are looking for more challenging (college-level) content, then we would recommend enrolling students in Reasons Institute courses.
How should I record my student's course on his/her transcript?
The Student Hour provides the common standard used by U.S. universities to measure high school academic achievement. One Student Hour consists of approximately 12 hours of class time with an instructor over the course of one semester. Traditionally, this breaks down into a 50-minute meeting one day per week for 14–16 weeks.
Upon completion of the Good Science, Good Faith course (lessons 1–20), we recommend the following credits should be assigned:
- Bible or Religion 1 credit
- Philosophy of Science 1 credit
Are Reasons Academy courses accredited?
Most states classify homeschools as private schools. In these cases, parents are the ones who provide the "accreditation" for their child's education. In other words, the parents, not a third party, provide the quality guarantee for their children's education. While homeschooling is legal in all 50 states, parents should check their local laws so as to conform to their requirements and provide proper documentation. The Home School Legal Defense Association has a helpful summary of those laws on its Web site.
While courses offered through Reasons Academy are not accredited by any third party, our graduate and undergraduate courses (on which our high school course is based) are all accredited by the highest level of university accreditation. Qualified instructors have been carefully chosen to participate as lecturers in this course, but parents are ultimately responsible for gauging the progress of their child’s education and assigning the appropriate letter grade.
One issue of which Christian parents should be aware is that some universities now question the use of young-earth-creationist science textbooks. In 2005, the University of California system proposed requiring students who used creation-science textbooks in high school to take a proficiency exam in order to demonstrate an adequate knowledge of science before entering college. It remains to be seen what if anything will result from such efforts. Because Reasons Academy does not use creation-science textbooks, this issue need not be a concern for parents who choose our program.
The Good Science, Good Faith course provides a serious, academically challenging, and highly rewarding program. Our textbooks and videos are from mainstream publishers, including PBS and the Discovery Channel. Even so, Reasons Academy makes no guarantee regarding the acceptance of our courses by any public or private school or any other educating body. Questions regarding acceptance requirements should be directed to the admissions official at the institution of application.
What is Reasons To Believe's approach to science education?
The scholar team at Reasons To Believe actively promotes the importance of scientific literacy. For this reason, we recommend using mainstream science curriculum, especially during the high school years. Secular texts in chemistry, physics, astronomy, earth science, and biology expose students to the kind of research they will encounter in university studies, as well as the broader culture.
Reasons To Believe holds that neither the scientific nor biblical data supports naturalistic evolution. However, we do think it’s critical that Christian young people know how to respond to its claims from a testable creation model perspective. For this reason, we advocate the idea that a good science education should include a rigorous and respectful study of biological evolution.
Can my student earn college credit for any of your courses?
A growing trend among homeschoolers is to earn college credit prior to high school graduation. Students can get a jump start on their university studies by taking courses through Reasons Institute.
If you want to take a Reasons Institute course for college credit, do not register through Reasons Academy. Instead, visit the Reasons Institute site for a complete list of courses and enrollment information.
For more information about earning college credit, call (800) 482-7836 x116 or email the the Course Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Does Reasons To Believe plan to write a science curriculum?
Not at this time. One of the primary reasons for this is that the scientific data contained in such a curriculum would be identical to the information taught in mainstream curriculum, with the exception of biological evolution, which is generally limited to one or two chapters in the biology text. But astronomy, physics, chemistry, and earth science would all be the same.
There are only a handful of secular curriculum publishers - Prentice-Hall and Glencoe being two of the main ones. Big publishers have become more friendly with homeschoolers in recent years. If you're heading up a co-op class, call the publisher and tell them, they might be willing to send you some free review copies since students will be required to purchase whichever text you end up choosing.
How do I help my students think through evolutionary content of secular texts?
There are a couple different ways of handling this situation.
One is to use the book, Explore Evolution, as a supplement to a standard biology textbook which addresses the commonly put-forth evidences for evolution. The book does not promote Intelligent Design or creationism. It simply walks students through the strengths and weaknesses for each of the so-called "icons" of evolution, helping them to think critically about them. Additional DVDs such as Icons of Evolution and Darwin's Dilemma could also be used.
The second option is to incorporate the Good Science, Good Faith curriculum. This program offers a well-rounded solution, focusing on how to integrate science into the Christian worldview as a whole, addressing a wide range of topics, many more than simply evolution.
Can adults take the "Good Science, Good Faith" course?
Yes! Even though this course was originally designed for high school students, we have found that adults enjoy it too. This course is ideal for those people who maybe haven't had much science education or interest since high school biology, but are now wanting to equip themselves in basic science apologetics so they can engage in a discussion about these issues with their children or grandchildren.