• Question: Why hasn't the Theory of Evolution become a Law of Science?

    Asked by The_Riddleress to Charlotte, Hannah, Majid, Richard, Sam on 9 Mar 2016.
    • Photo: Hannah Moir

      Hannah Moir answered on 9 Mar 2016:


      Interesting question and one that still receives a lot of debate and question.
      I guess the definition of Theory and Law some part to this question. Where as a Law is a a described observation a Theory is the explanation. As such the theory of evolution may be questioned to be both!

    • Photo: Charlotte Green

      Charlotte Green answered on 9 Mar 2016:


      Think Hannah has hit the nail on the head a scientific law is a described phenomenon (usually involving a mathematical equation but not always) where as a theory is an explanation. The law is a starting place.

      It would be cool if someone designed a time machine so we could go back and watch evolution happening 🙂

    • Photo: Majid Ahmed

      Majid Ahmed answered on 9 Mar 2016:


      Great responses from the other scientists.

      If I am honest, I don’t know an awful lot about evolution. My understanding is probably slightly more advanced to yours. But I back Hannah and Charlotte up in saying that a law of science is something that describes what will happen given a certain situation (usually involving a mathematical formula), whereas a theory describes how something happens.

      Interestingly, whilst the theory of evolution is firmly accepted as indisputable from most of the scientific community, there is still some disagreement in the public domain such as supporters of creationism and intelligent design. Their ‘evidence’ to support their disagreement with the theory of evolution includes the lack of evidence supporting macroevolution such as transitional fossils supporting the idea that a species can develop from another species (for example ape to humans) – they tend not to disagree with microevolution as the evidence for natural selection is pretty concrete. They also state that evolution is not consistent with the second law of thermodynamics and that some evidence supporting Darwin’s theory of evolutions is fraudulent. Whilst this contention from anti-evolutionists is not enough to discount evolution as valid, it probably means much stronger evidence has to be collected to further convince sceptics.

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