ERIC Number: ED202751
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Apr
Curricular Implications of a National Survey of Global Understanding.
Hill, David A.
This paper discusses a national survey undertaken in 1980 to determine the attitudes and knowledge about world affairs of 3,000 randomly selected undergraduate students. The purpose of the survey was to provide information to aid educational decision makers as they strengthen the international perspective of the undergraduate curriculum. The specific purpose of this document is to inform geographers about the scope and nature of the geography-related content contained in the survey. Because approximately 75% of the survey content was based on information currently taught in college geography courses (i.e., environment, food, health, international monetary and trade relations, population, energy, racial and ethnic issues, human rights, war and armaments, arts and culture, religion, relations among states, and distribution of natural characteristics), the author believed that geography educators would be particularly interested in the survey results. Findings from analysis of responses to the 101 test items on the survey indicated that two-year students scored 40%, freshmen scored 42%, and seniors achieved 50%. For all three groups, four issues were most frequently understood--arts and culture, war and armaments, racial and ethnic issues, and international monetary and trade relations, and one issue--religion--was consistently least understood. The conclusion is that geography educators can help students understand world affairs if they place more emphasis on the teaching of world and regional geography, and, particularly, on the interdependence and connectivity of places within the global system. Tabular and narrative information is presented on responses to specific items according to a variety of variables, including grade level, item difficulty, and number of geography courses taken. (DB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (Los Angeles, CA, April 19-22, 1981).