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What now for evolution education?

Reiss, M; Harms, U; (2019) What now for evolution education? In: Harms, U and Reiss, M, (eds.) Evolution Education: Re-considered. (pp. 331-343). Springer: Cham, Switzerland.

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Knowledge and understanding of evolution is generally poor. Yet evolution is foundational to the science of biology. Here, we review the contributions made by the other chapters in this book and suggest ways forward for the field. The chapters in this book demonstrate that knowledge and understanding of evolution are aided by the sorts of pedagogical approaches that are known to work well in other areas of science education and beyond. In particular, there is evidence that the appropriate use of teaching for metacognition, multimodal approaches, argumentation, inquiry-based science education, reinforcement of learning, context-based learning, models, intercultural dialogic approach and object-based learning can all help promote learning about evolution. To this list we can add that teacher expertise is of great importance. In addition, as the chapters in this book show, there are some reasons for optimism as the biology education community is gradually building up a corpus of knowledge about what works well when teaching specific aspects of evolution. Nevertheless, one of the conclusions of this book is that there is much that still remains to be done in researching evolution education; we know more about the problems learners have in in acquiring a good understanding of evolution that about how to help them so acquire this. While there are an increasing number of research-based interventions in evolution education that are leading to greater conceptual understanding, the curriculum and pedagogical approaches that these interventions draw on are rarely ones that are robustly established. Furthermore, we still lack consensus about the best instruments for measuring cognitive gains and there is a paucity of longitudinal studies. Overall, the field of evolution education, while perhaps no longer in its infancy, still has a long way to go before it matures.

Type: Book chapter
Title: What now for evolution education?
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-14698-6_18
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-14698-6_18
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Science education, Evolution education
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10079308
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