AUSTIN, Texas -- A Texas panel has been advised to approve an on-line Master's degree course on teaching creationism.
The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board is scheduled to discuss the program offered by the Institute for Creation Research in Dallas at its January meeting, the San Antonio Express-News reported. An advisory committee of university teachers recommended approval.
The course aims to train teachers to "understand the universe within the integrating framework of Biblical creationism," the institute's Web site says.
Admission is limited to those who believe the creation story in Genesis is literally true, although the institute claims scientific literacy as a goal.
"It's just the latest trick," said James Bower, a University of Texas at San Antonio neurobiologist. "They have no interest in teaching science. They are hostile to science and fundamentally have a religious objective."
Teaching evolution is a hot issue in Texas where a state education official recently resigned after sending an e-mail notifying colleagues about a talk by an anti-creationist.
Commissioner of Higher Education Raymund Paredes has promised to give both sides a fair hearing before ruling on the institute course.
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