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Study Yields Insights into Public Perceptions and Attitudes Towards Science

Religion in Public Institutions chartAPS Staff
The data in this chart are taken from a survey conducted last summer and commissioned by a consortium of scientific societies. The results of the survey contain some good news for science: when asked, 53% of the respondents favored teaching evolution in public school science classes, a much higher percentage than favored either creationism (36%) or intelligent design (27%). But there was considerable uncertainty among the respondents, especially about intelligent design, many of whom were unsure when asked whether it should be taught. As the report from the polling agencies concludes, “the debate is not nearly as polarizing as previous polling would lead us to believe. In fact, there is more uncertainty than polarization. With this uncertainty [comes] opportunity; scientists can play a key educational role for the public.”

More data from the survey can be found in the article "Public Opinion on Evolution and Intelligent Design."

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Editor: Alan Chodos
Contributing Editor: Jennifer Ouellette
Staff Writer: Ernie Tretkoff