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Re: A few very short questions

I'm not sure it's such a big problem.  I taught a dinosaur course at UT
Austin for several years, and cladistics is NOT outside the grasping
range of the average citizen.  Anyone can understand it.  Some people
assume that, since it looks complicated, it will be difficult - but it
can be explained simply.  Perhaps not appropriate for first graders, but
neither are Linnean ranks.

Raymond Ancog wrote:

> Has anyone ever wondered how paleontologists are going to explain
> cladistics to a whole generation of schoolkids who were weaned on the
> Linnean system? Or how do we explain it to first-time listeners who aren't
> familiar with Linneaus in the first place. I can imagine delivering a
> lecture to high school students about cladistics and some of them going
> "Duh?!" in their minds. The Linnean hierarchy is so firmly entrenched in
> the academic psyche ( and in everyday use) that it takes almost a paradigm
> shift (IMHO) to adjust to cladistics.
> Raymond Thaddeus C. Ancog
> Mines and Geosciences Bureau
> Philippines

Christopher A. Brochu
Department of Geology
Field Museum of Natural History
Roosevelt Road at Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60605

voice: 312-665-7633  (NEW)
fax: 312-665-7641 (NEW)
electronic:  cbrochu@fmppr.fmnh.org