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Biology teachers’ conceptions of Humankind Origin across secular and religious countries: an international comparison

Authors
  • Silva, Heslley Machado1
  • Oliveira, Alandeon W.2
  • Belloso, Gabriela Varela3
  • Díaz, Martín Andrés4
  • Carvalho, Graça S.5
  • 1 University Center of Formiga-MG, Formiga, Brazil , Formiga (Brazil)
  • 2 State University of New York Albany, Albany, New York, USA , Albany (United States)
  • 3 Education Training Council, National Administration of Public Education, Montevideo, Uruguay , Montevideo (Uruguay)
  • 4 National University of Matanza, San Justo, Argentina , San Justo (Argentina)
  • 5 CIEC, University of Minho, Braga, Portugal , Braga (Portugal)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Evolution: Education and Outreach
Publisher
Springer US
Publication Date
Jan 25, 2021
Volume
14
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1186/s12052-020-00141-9
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

Striving toward a better understanding of how the global spread of creationist ideology may impact biology teachers and teaching worldwide, this study comparatively examines how biology teachers from three Latin American countries (Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay) conceive the origin of humankind. It is reported that teachers from Uruguay (the most secular country) and Argentina (a country with intermediate religiosity) more frequently associated humankind origin with scientific terms Evolution, Natural selection, and Australopithecus. In contrast, Brazilian teachers stood out as those most frequently associating humankind’s origin to the religious term “God” alongside scientific terms. This study underscores the importance of the interplay of social factors (societal religiosity) and psychological factors (e.g., personal commitment) when considering the impact of teacher exposure to creationist ideology. It also highlights the need for biology teachers (particularly those in more religious countries) to undergo professional development.

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