From the news story writeup of the journal article:
“Considerable research suggests that supporters of evolution, scientific methods, and reason itself are losing battles in America’s classrooms.”
Berkman and Plutzer say the nation must have better-trained biology teachers who can confidently advocate for high standards of science education in their local communities. Colleges and universities should mandate a dedicated undergraduate course in evolution for all prospective biology teachers, for example, and follow up with outreach refresher courses, so that more biology teachers embrace evolutionary biology.
“Combined with continued successes in courtrooms and the halls of state government, this approach offers our best chance of increasing the scientific literacy of future generations,” they conclude.
These authors wrote a book, Evolution, Creationism, and the Battle to Control America’s Classrooms, that I recently finished reading. I hope to type up a review of this well-researched and interesting book soon. Their journal article came from research they did for the book.
And here’s an interview with the authors.
People have a lot of opportunities to take in information about evolution, but there’s a lot of information in churches and the Internet that takes a contrary position, too.
Outreach by itself has not been sufficient.
However, almost every American has taken a general biology class in high school. It’s around 97 percent of people. This seems like a place that might make the most difference. We know that the material taught in many schools is really cursory. While there are terrific teachers, most typically teach evolution as an isolated unit. Teachers also dissociate from it and not say it has been confirmed by the scientific community.
Some of these teachers change evolution from an institution to an opinion.