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Re: Journalists and High Schoolers (was: Re: crocodylians, amphibians ...)
> >Evolution is taught, though :-)
> >*Paleontology is supposed to be taught twice in Austria, in the 8th and
> >12th year of school. Teachers sometimes change.
> Well, it's nice to see that Austria has at least a national plan to teach
paleontology. Try doing that in the United States and you'd be shot down...
OK, er, Austria is smaller than Florida and has 8 million inhabitants...
that makes it easier IMHO. There isn't much paleontology in the biology
books, of course, and the little that there is is... you can imagine it.
*Brontosaurus* in lakes and stuff, progress in horse evolution.
> when freshman biology teachers (biology is taught to most kids as
> Personally, I have taken biology twice (both regular and "advanced").
When is one a freshman?
Here, like (to varying degrees) everywhere in Europe, there isn't anywhere
near as much freedom in school curricula as in the USA. We simply have
biology from the 5th year on, 2 hours per week.
> In neither class we discussed anything related to evolution, and by that
I mean _nothing_, even in the so-called advanced class. In terms of fossils
they were also never mentioned. [...] then spent the duration of the year
studying Linnean ranks (i.e., what is an echinoderm, what features
constitute a mollusk, etc.).
We never got so detailed. It mostly was human biology again and again, each
time slightly more detailed, and photosynthesis, with a little bit of
everything else. In the last year Mendel genetics was brought at length
before modern genetics.
> Perhaps it is for these reasons that high school students-and
journalists-don't seem to have a good grasp of what a crocodile is and what
a pholidosaur is.
Before this thread I thought *Pholidosaurus* was a gavial... :-]