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Study: 25% of Oklahoma Biology I teachers think humans walked with dinosaurs


Oklahoma lawmakers are not the only ones who have difficulty understanding (and believing) the fundamentals of biology and evolution.

According to a recent study by researchers Tony Yates and Edmund Marek, a good chunk of Oklahoma Biology I teachers don't know a lot about those subjects either. Considering we live in Oklahoma, where our TV channels "accidentally" block information about evolution, that's so surprising.

Here's a good breakdown of their incredibly depressing study from

Evolution by natural selection is the backbone of the science of biology, but those in charge of teaching that to children don’t seem to understand it.

A recent study of Oklahoma introductory biology teachers found that a quarter of those surveyed misunderstood major concepts about evolution. Even more than that got at least one or two ideas wrong, and nearly half admitted to knowing that they didn’t understand evolution very well.

For example:

• 40.8 percent strongly or somewhat agree with the statement, “‘Survival of the fittest’ means basically that ‘only the strong survive’.”

• 36.8 percent disagree with the statement, “Complex structures such as the eye could have been formed by evolution.”

• 25 percent agreed with the statement, “Scientific evidence indicates that dinosaurs and humans lived at the same time in the past.”

• 31 percent disagreed with the statement, “There exists a large amount of evidence supporting the theory of evolution.”

• When asked to assess their knowledge of evolution, only 67 percent felt that their grasp was “good” or “excellent.”

Yep, 25% of the Biology I teachers (yes, science) believe dinosaurs, humans and Ringo Starr walked the earth together. That's pretty sad. Know what's even sadder? That sentence probably made our lawmakers inside the capitol cheer and applaud. Expect State Senator Josh Brecheen to issue a resolution thanking those science teachers for not believing in, or teaching, proper science.

Anyway, this news doesn't surprise me all that much. Back when I was a little Ogle at Western Oaks Junior High, students had to go through one hour of mandatory AIDS education during their 8th grade year. It was taught like sex ed. Boys went to one classroom, and the girls went to another. I think you watched a video, filled out a worksheet, whatever, etc. Towards the end of the hour, students had the chance to ask the teacher some questions about AIDS.

I don't remember too much about the video or worksheet, but I do remember the Q&A with my 8th grade Life Science teacher Mr. Fuller. It's kind of hard to forget.

One kid asked Mr. Fuller if you can get AIDS from oral sex, which led to a different student asking what oral sex was, which then lead to an entire class full of 8th grade boys suddenly being educated about oral sex.

Later on, a different kid asked where AIDS came from. Did it just come out nowhere? "No," Mr. Fuller assured us. He then proceeded to tell the entire class the AIDS origins story. You know, the one where God created AIDS to combat sin and discourage people from living deviant lifestyles.

I shit you not, that what my Life Science teacher told us. When the class ended, I remember thinking a couple of different things as I walked back to my locker. One was that Mr. Fuller was kind of crazy and should be teaching a youth group instead of science. The other was that oral sex seemed unbelievably gross and scary. One of those thoughts has stayed with me to this day.

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