Climate change education survey in depth

03.14.2016

Mixed Messages coverMixed Messages: How Climate Change is Taught in America's Public Schools, a detailed report of the first nationwide survey of climate change education in the United States, conceived and funded by NCSE and conducted in collaboration with researchers at Pennsylvania State University, is now available (PDF) on-line.

The report is divided into four parts. Part 1 focuses on what teachers do in their classrooms; part 2 focuses on teachers' educational background and scientific knowledge; part 3 focuses on the political and cultural forces and the personal values that influence teachers; and part 4 outlines the policy implications of the data.

The report ends by expressing the hope "that the results of the survey ... will help guide those whose goal it is to ensure that today's students and the next generation of citizens have the scientific foundation that will allow them to grapple with complex proposals to address the challenges of climate change."

Mixed Messages expands on the results and analyses previously reported in "Climate Confusion Among U.S. Teachers," published (PDF) in the journal Science, and in "Climate Education in the Classroom: Cloudy with a Chance of Confusion," published (subscription required) in Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

The NCSE/Penn State study received extensive coverage in the press, including from the Guardian, Newsweek, the Washington Post, Mother Jones, Time, and The New York Times (all from February 11, 2016), as well as the satirical The Onion (February 15, 2016) and the Natural Resources Defense Council's On Earth (March 13, 2016).