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ERIC Number: EJ896065
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 74
ISSN: ISSN-1446-6120
Overwhelming Scientific Confidence in Evolution and Its Centrality in Science Education--And the Public Disconnect
Wiles, Jason R.
Science Education Review, v9 n1 p18-27 2010
The teaching and learning of biological evolution has been beset by a host of challenges ranging from pedagogical obstacles to social controversy. These include two distinctive sets of problems: one arising from the fact that many evolutionary concepts may seem counterintuitive to students, and the other stemming from objections rooted in religion. A misconception common to both of these categories is the notion that significant doubt exists within the scientific community as to whether evolution actually occurred, or that it is "a theory in crisis." This article reviews the positions of the scientific and science education communities and how these compare with those of the general public. Despite the overwhelming acceptance of evolution among scientists, and despite evolution's centrality to modern biology education, virtually all national polls indicate that a strikingly large proportion of North Americans reject evolution, indicating a great disconnect between the scientific community and the largely dissenting and apparently under-informed, or misinformed, public. Large-scale research efforts regarding current practices related to the instruction of evolution, and into more effective methods of teaching evolution, are needed; certainly in the United States, but urgently, even if surprisingly, in Canada. (Contains 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada; United States