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Americans’ Scientific Knowledge and Beliefs about Human Evolution in the Year of Darwin
The year 2009 marked the 150th anniversary of the publication of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. Over eighty years ago, the Scopes "monkey trial" in Dayton, Tennessee, marked the beginning of a long battle for the soul of American public opinion, pitting biblical creationism against the teaching of human evolution in public schools. But how well do we understand what Americans know and believe about human evolution? National surveys by Gallup have certainly told us much about trends in Americans’ core beliefs about
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A national survey reveals that one in ten Australians do not believe in evolution — and three in ten think that humans lived at the same time as dinosaurs.
A new poll indicates that public acceptance of evolution is significantly higher in Great Britain and Canada than in the United States.
A recent Harris poll included questions on evolution and creationism, with unsurprising results.
"Just in time for the bicentennial observance of Charles Darwin's birth, a new survey of Louisiana residents shows 40 percent of the respondents believe evolution is not well-supported by evidence or generally accepted within the scientific community," the Baton Rouge Advocate (April 14, 2009) reports.
The scientific community needs to increase its involvement in defending science education -- especially evolution -- according to a coalition of seventeen scientific and educational societies, including the National Academy of Sciences, the National Science Teachers Association, the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, and the American Institute for Biological Sciences.
A poll recently conducted for Newsweek by Princeton Survey Research Associates International contained two questions relevant to the creationism/evolution controversy. The results [Link broken] were broadly consistent with those of previous polls using similar questions. The poll was conducted March 28-29, 2007, with 1004 adults aged 18 and over participating; the margin of error was +/- 4%.