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ERIC Number: EJ860994
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Nov
Pages: 25
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0036-8326
Academic Preparation in Biology and Advocacy for Teaching Evolution: Biology versus Non-Biology Teachers
Nehm, Ross H.; Kim, Sun Young; Sheppard, Keith
Science Education, v93 n6 p1122-1146 Nov 2009
Despite considerable focus on evolution knowledge-belief relationships, little research has targeted populations with strong content backgrounds, such as undergraduate degrees in biology. This study (1) measured precertified biology and non-biology teachers' (n = 167) knowledge of evolution and the nature of science; (2) quantified teacher preferences for the teaching of creationism in schools; (3) examined the associations among knowledge and belief variables; and (4) contrasted the knowledge and beliefs of prospective biology teachers with those of non-biology teachers. Methodologically, teacher knowledge was quantified by using three measures and studied in relation to certification area, self-reported religiosity, personal conflict concerning science and religion, and completion of an evolution course. We found (1) generally low levels of knowledge of evolution and the nature of science--and high misconception magnitudes--in both biology and non-biology teachers; (2) comparable antievolutionary positions in biology and non-biology teachers: nearly half of the teachers in both groups advocated for the inclusion of creationism in school; (3) weak association between knowledge and preference/belief variables; and (4) no difference in preference for teaching creationism between those teachers who had taken an evolution course and those who had not. Overall, biology and non-biology teachers were found to display "mixed" and "novice naturalistic" evolutionary reasoning patterns. (Contains 2 tables and 4 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A