Kent Hovind’s Doctoral Dissertation

Kent Hovind, a once-popular creationist now in jail for tax evasion, wrote a doctoral dissertation. This is how it starts:

Hello, my name is Kent Hovind. I am a creation/science evangelist. I live in Pensacola, Florida. I have been a high school science teacher since 1976. I’ve been very active in the creation/evolution controversy for quite some time. As an evangelist, God has given me the opportunity to preach and teach the wonderful story of His marvelous creation over 300 times each year to churches, schools (public and private), parent groups, youth groups, on the radio, and in university debates.

It is my burning desire to help Christians get back to a simple faith in God’s Word. Satan’s method has always been to instill doubt in God’s Word.

Can you believe that this rubbish was accepted? That’s where his “Dr.” came from. Unbelievable.

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  • Siberia

    … really? I’d fail high school if I wrote an essay like that…!

  • anti_supernaturalist

    ID is short for IDiot

    The falsity of intelligent design is established by the existence of those who can believe in it.

    the anti_supernaturalist

  • Siamang

    And that’s how I came to be called Pope Siamang IIV.

  • Reginald Selkirk

    Can you believe that this rubbish was accepted?

    Yes I can, because I know that the institution of higher education which granted Hovind’s degree is a diploma mill.

    • random guy

      anyone that calls a split-level trailer a university ought to be beaten up by roving gangs or doctoral students.

      • Custador

        I don’t want to get all US-basher on you guys (again), but don’t the government have any kind of control over who is allowed to offer college/university level education? It’s pretty tightly regulated everywhere else, I think.

        • Daniel Florien

          In order for it to be accredited, yes. These institutions are not accredited.

        • WMDKitty

          A) What Daniel said.

          B) We need stricter controls. SRSLY, it shouldn’t just be accreditation, there needs to be some kind of regulations on what can be called a “university”.

          (And yes, I am a US-ian.)

          • Custador

            So, hold on, if it’s not accredited then he’s not really Doctor Hovind, is he? He’s just plain old Kun…. Er, I mean, Kent Hovind. Totally with WMDKitty on this one, handing out diplomas when you haven’t even proven your worth as an institution should be illegal – it adds false legitimacy to men like Hovind.

            We had a similar thing in the UK with a “dietician” (read: evil b*tch-queen from hell) named “Dr.” Gillian McKeith who was writing books and all over the TV for months before somebody thought to check out her honorific – turns out it was just self-applied and she thought nobody would notice.

            (Daniel, feel free to delete the other copy of this from the moderation queue, I keep forgetting there’s a certain word that your filter doesn’t like!)

            • nullifidian
            • Custador

              LEGEND :D

            • Custador

              I stand corrected about McKeith – gotta love Wiki: “In 1994, she obtained a master’s degree, and in 1997, a PhD, both in holistic nutrition via a distance-learning programme from the non-accredited American Holistic College of Nutrition”

              So apparently your bogus doctorates are available for export!

            • Jabster

              Good old Gillian McKeith … I’ll tell you exactly what you need to eat and no it’s not the sort of thing that you can get in you local super market, like broccoli, it’s a super food that you can get from me! I noticed she’s also started linking to external references in a hope to prove that she’s doing “real science” and not making claims such as chlorophyll will help oxygenated you when you eat plants leaves and seeds contain all the energy they need to fully grow. The annoying thing is that if you strip away all the crap what nutritionists are basically saying is eat a balanced healthy diet but unfortunately that’s not going to ship many products.

            • Leo


              “As the journalist Ben Goldacre pointed out in his Bad Science column in the Guardian, McKeith’s much-vaunted certified membership of the American Association of Nutritional Consultants is also a peculiar boast. Ben Goldacre managed to buy the same membership for his dead cat via the internet for the bargain price of $60.”

              Also on the topic of diploma mills, this is hilariously worrying.

          • nullifidian

            Here in the UK, the word “university” is a protected term and can’t be used by these sorts of diploma mills.

            • WMDKitty

              Why can’t WE have a law/rule/regulation like that? *pouts*

            • Swimmy

              It’s a state rather than federal issue. Several states do have such laws:

              I don’t think this should be a federal issue, either. In this equilibrium, more people get fooled by fake degrees. However, critics can point at those fake degrees and say, “See? They couldn’t even put the work in to learn this stuff; they had to go to fake universities.”

            • WMDKitty

              Needs to be a federal issue.

            • Reginald Selkirk

              What, you wanna make a federal case out of it?

            • WMDKitty

              Why the hell not? It would save us (and the rest of the world) the time and trouble of determining whether or not a person’s diploma is legit.

            • Roger

              Reginald was making a joke. Here in the colonies, it’s a common joke to say “Hey, don’t make a federal case out of it!” if we think someone is overreacting to something.

  • thewarfreak

    Yeah, not only is it ridiculous (and scary that science teachers see their schools as places to evangelize!) but it is poorly written! GG!

    • Custador

      That’s a good point – I wonder how many kids he permanently intellectually crippled as a teacher?

      • Sunny Day

        There’s nothing permanent about this type of crippling.


  • WMDKitty

    I could shit out a better dissertation than that.

    • JonJon


    • Custador

      What really f***s me off is that I’m 1600 words into a 3000 word essay (which I write at least four of a year, plus take clinical science exams, plus do clinical skills demonstrations, plus re-qualify to do CPR, plus take a drug calculation test, all of which I have to do EVERY SINGLE YEAR), and I’ve got 19 citations from academic books, articles, studies and authorities in there SO FAR with half the essay to go – and this is all for a bachelor’s degree.

      This dipshit copied his “about me” section straight out of MySpace thinks it makes him a doctor.

      It insults people who actually work for the letters after their names.

      • Jabster

        When I was at university I found it much easy to write my essay around references that sounded good rather than find references that supported my argument. Some may call it cheating, I call it thinking outside the box … can I mention leverage now?

      • Jay

        Tell-me-abowd-it Custador

        I’m almost finished my fricking doctoral thesis. This is not a thesis. There are no aims, hypotheses, research, conclusions. His reference list is 1, the Bible. Thats it.

        Saying that I am having fun avoiding my own thesis by reading this one. Mine doesn;t have as much pure comedy in it!!

        • Custador

          Good luck with your thesis mate. I haven’t decided whether to go that route yet – though I admit having a doctorate in nursing is quite appealing because it would mean I could mock all the medical doctors for not being real doctors :D

          (Nb – for those who don’t know, “doctor” is an honorific that medical doctors use even though they don’t have doctorates. A Medical degree is not a doctorate).

  • Francesc

    ” God has given me the opportunity to preach and teach the wonderful story of His marvelous creation over 300 times each year to churches”
    Really? I though he was in that business because he could win some money withouth do an actual work, but hey, working five days per week you would work 260 days in a year. Of course, who would paid him?

    Note: As he was a christian evangelist, I have to assume that he wasn’t lying
    Note II: Given the problems to define periods of time that creationists have, maybe that “year” means “in my life”

    • WMDKitty

      As he IS a Christian Evangelist, I have to assume that he’s LYING.

      • Francesc

        That sentence was meant to be ironic :-p

    • Felix

      The idea is to sell his DVDs and ‘books’ to gullible ministers of even more gullible congregations, who will then play or read them in church. The marvelous Mr. Hovind didn’t say he woulöd be actually present in the flesh, did he? In religious jargon, it appears perfectly sufficient to be present in spirit and/or substance.

  • trj

    Here’s a picture of Patriot Bible University.

    Judging from the picture, it seems to be top of the line. Probably has a coffee machine and everything.

    • Joe Agnost


      An f-ing trailer? Really? That is too funny…..

  • scw

    From Wikipedia Various criticisms have been made of Hovind’s dissertation, including charges of incompleteness, low academic quality, poor writing, poor spelling, and ungrammatical style.[16][17] The lack of quality was described, in part, by the fact that “the pages are not numbered; there is no title; of sixteen or so chapters in the index only the first four are finished; misspellings are rampant (“Immerged” for emerged and “epic” for epoch “tentable” for testable are three examples); and the single illustration was apparently cut out of a science book with scissors and fastened to the thesis with glue or tape

    I’m sitting here giggling, imagining a dissertation turned in on construction paper with sparkly glitter and stars carefully glued on, although, in reality his thesis is probably not as interesting as that.

    • WMDKitty

      It isn’t.

    • trj

      Ha ha, I can see it – A doctoral dissertation analyzing the significance of My Little Pony, from Hasbro University.

      • WMDKitty


  • Mark D

    There are many evangelical leaders with bogus Doctoral titles. There was even a fake doctor of divinity in Bill Maher’s “Religulous”

    • Felix

      Actually, Doctor of Divinity is an official degree awarded to high achievements in theology. Yes, we know that doesn’t amount to much more than some credible study of old languages while ostensibly researching some guy who only exists within language. Don’t ask me why that’s any respectworthy.

      • wazza

        I think he meant that the DD was, itself, fake.

  • Keith Allison

    An examination of “Dr.” Halfwit’s dissertation:”The Dissertation Kent Hovind Doesn’t Want You to Read”, written by a real PhD:

    • Custador

      That was an entertaining read :-)

  • gmcfly

    Is it really called “Patriot Bible University”? Really? Was “Jesus 9/11 Freedom College” already taken?

    • Elliott

      Hey man, don’t trash-talk J9FC.

      That’s where I got my doctorate in Jesus, and my masters in 9/11 — in Magna Cum Freedom.

      • Elliott

        Whoops, ignore that extra ‘in’ (looks like I better head back to school and pick up a few more PhD’s, one of them in typing)

  • LRA

    LOL!!! The IDiocy is un-frakkin-believable! I thought about giving you *my* opening paragraph to my master’s thesis, but decided just to give you the title instead:

    Dominant Negative Serum Response Factor Transgene Expression Affects the Regulation of Activity-Dependent Early Response Genes Coding for Cell Signaling Proteins, Transcription Factors, Structural Proteins, and Enzymes in Primary Neuronal Cultures.

    Yeah. Now that’s a *real* work of science. Blow it out your a**, Hovind.

    • Custador

      That would be why you understand evolution and he doesn’t, then. Though doubtless he’d still claim to be the bigger expert, because he’s a f***ing arsehole.

      • Jabster

        “because he’s a f***ing arsehole.”

        Considering where he is now that may be truer than you think … :-)

        • trj


  • Flea

    “Hello, my name is Kent Hovind. I am a creation/science evangelist.”
    I don’t understand why the guy who leaked this precious document deleted the sentence that was between these two; here it is:
    “I am 7 years old.”
    Now it makes sense.

    • JonJon

      Is this real? I’m curious, mostly because these are mostly wiki-based sites. I mean, are we sure this isn’t a hoax? It’s too perfect. I smell Poe.

      • Custador

        Unfortunately, diploma mills are a common phenomenon in the US.

      • trj

        No, it’s real. The pathetic nature of Kent Hovind’s “dissertation” and his worthless “education” and “doctorate degree” from a creationist diploma mill was common knowledge even before Wikipedia et al existed. Paper copies have been in circulation for many years, and people have confirmed that they match the WikiLeaks version.

    • Swimmy

      A 100 page Poe is a pretty hefty investment besides. Unless there’s anything obviously self-mocking rather than just stupid, I think we can safely say it’s not a Poe. Stupid is what we should expect from him.

  • trj

    I notice that Hovind says he “double majored in education and the Bible” in college, and he received “Masters and Doctorate degrees in education” from Patriot University. Also, the University “offered a Ph.D. in education” at some point.

    Is it a common American phrase that you receive some title “in education”, or is Hovind just making a pathetic attempt to justify “education” as a legitimate line of study?

    • Kodie

      “Education” is a real field of study.

      Jill Biden, who is the Second Lady (spouse of the Vice President Joe Biden), has a Ed.D. from University of Delaware.

      “Institutional Accreditation: The University of Delaware has been continuously accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education since that association’s inception in 1921. The University’s accreditation was reaffirmed in 2006 and its next self-study evaluation is scheduled for 2011.”

      • Kodie

        Some more information:

        Another famous example is Bill Cosby – earlier I tried to find it on his page and put together something, but kept coming up with his many honorary degrees and thought I made it up or remembered wrong.

        In 1976, Cosby earned a Doctor of Education degree from the University of Massachusetts. For his doctoral research, he wrote a dissertation entitled, “An Integration of the Visual Media Via ‘Fat Albert And The Cosby Kids’ Into the Elementary School Curriculum as a Teaching Aid and Vehicle to Achieve Increased Learning”.

        • trj

          Ok, so Hovind’s claim to a real education is not necessarily false. Except of course, he got it from Midwestern Baptist College and Patriot Bible “University”.


          • Kodie

            Yeah, that’s the accreditation issue. The article says, “Patriot is not accredited by any recognized accreditation body.” It can be accredited by some agency of morons and liars, though, but then it wouldn’t be recognized by institutions and employers as a valid accreditation. Some pretty decent schools may not be accredited either – just short of the minimum requirements, perhaps, and this matters very little to a great many employers and graduate schools.

            • Custador

              Midwestern Baptist College is also non-accredited, which makes one wonder how Hovind got a job as a teacher!

            • Kodie

              “Between 1975 and 1988, Hovind served as an assistant pastor and teacher at three private Baptist schools, including one he started.[3] As these were private schools, Hovind was not required to have any teaching credentials or accredited qualifications.”


  • Lafayette

    The best bit is where he starts his actual argument with the phrase “Well, enough of my yakking…”

    • Daniel Florien


    • trj

      I think my favorite quote is this one from p. 57:

      “Evolution is a religious faith. If the evolutionists want to believe in evolution, they are free to do so. We live in America which is a free country. We are free to choose what we want to believe. What I am upset about is the fact that their faith is being taught as science in the public school system at my expense as a taxpayer. That upsets me greatly!””

      Good one, Kent.

      • guy

        Actually “at my expense as a taxpayer.” isn’t entirely true, as he is in prison for non payment of taxes. What hypocrisy!
        It only took me a few minutes to read the entire PhD but it was time well spent. I laughed for much longer afterwards.

      • rA

        If there were such a thing as a soul, mine would be crushed.

  • Metro

    “Creation/science evangelist.” Wow. Kent is an infinite evangelist.

    0 ÷ X is near ∞ for our purposes.

  • Christopher Bailey

    Will no one step forward to defend Dr. Hovind? All right, I will.

    First, I will hear no complaints about his writing style. He’s not an elegant writer, but he expresses his thoughts clearly and with no wasted words. I can actually assess his arguments, rather than trying to puzzle out from impenetrable jargon exactly what his arguments are.

    Second, let’s remember that he did some actual work for his doctorate. He didn’t just order a diploma from a catalog: he typed a hundred pages in which he sets forth his best arguments in some detail. He obviously did it from memory, and frequently what he remembered was wrong, but it still involved some work.

    Finally, the fact that the thesis repudiates reason itself as a means of knowing (he rejects “uniformitarianism,” the idea that processes we observe today produced similar effects in the past) should not prevent Dr. Hovind from earning a doctorate from Patriot University. Institutions that promote unreason, like fundamentalist schools, will want to know that a prospective employee is qualified in the discipline. They will rightly see a doctorate from PU as evidence of exactly the kind of qualifications they look for.

  • Matt

    I find it very interesting that there are so many people out there with such sad lives as to sit around scheming about ways to throw one man “under the bus” so to speak. There is so much hatred here for Dr. Hovind, and why? What purpose does this serve? And why such hatred for Christianity? Christians are among the nicest, most charitable groups on the face of this planet. I am talking about true Christians, men and women regenerated by the power of the Holy Spirit, not those who call themselves Christians simply because it is how they were raised, or because they prayed some “magical little prayer”. Why such animosity toward these people? Perhaps jealousy? They have something you don’t; some inner peace you cannot seem to attain? Could it stem more from a hatred of God and a love of self? The proud cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. Put away yourselves! Repent before a trice holy God, and believe on His Son who shed His blood for you, and you shall have eternal life!

    • Sunny Day

      I find it very interesting that you lead such a sad life to sit around scheming about ways to build up one man while attempting to tear down a group of people because they don’t live the same sad, fearful and uninteresting life that you lead.

      You have much ignorance here for “Dr.” Hovind and why? What purpose does your ignorance serve? Any why such hatred for this website? Atheists are among the nicest and most charitable groups on the face of this planet. I am talking about “true” Atheists, men and women regenerated by the idea that people are able to live their own lives free from superstitious beliefs of Gods,Spirits, and Demons. Why such animosity toward these people? Perhaps its jealousy? They have something you don’t; some inner peace, a freedom from the fear, hate and bigotry that religion spreads throughout the world. Could it stem more from a hatred of the “Other” and “Different” and a love of yourself and sense of self importance?

      The willful ignorant cannot claim success. Put way your cheap and tawdry bronze age mythology. Lift off the mask of willful ignorance and learn the wonders of this natural world. Live this life to its fullest instead of treating it as a test or trial to endure before going on to the “real life” in your make-believe heaven.

      • DarkMatter

        “Atheists are among the nicest and most charitable groups on the face of this planet. I am talking about “true” Atheists, men and women regenerated by the idea that people are able to live their own lives free from superstitious beliefs of Gods,Spirits, and Demons.”

        I agree with you and probably with Jill Bolte Taylor’s conclusion.

        • Sunny Day

          LOL WUT?

          • DarkMatter

            Now I have to watch it again.

            • DarkMatter

              Time: 15:30 onwards. amased at her insight, idea worth speading … probable solution to religions.

            • Sunny Day


              Was interesting to watch and an interesting set of observations she mad, but ultimately had nothing to do with my reply and the person to whom I was responding.

            • DarkMatter

              So be it.