Zimmerman, Michael. 'The Evolution-Creation Controversy: Opinions of Ohio High

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Zimmerman, Michael. "The Evolution-Creation Controversy: Opinions of Ohio High School Biology Teachers" Ohio Journal of Science 87 (4): 115-125, l987. [Zimmerman is a Professor in the Department of Biology, Oberlin College, Oberlin, OH, 44074. He is Editor of the Ohio Center for Science Education Newsletter.] ABSTRACT--This study present the results of a 19- item questionnaire distributed to all high school biology departments in the state of Ohio. The results indicated that Ohio high school biology teachers are far more likely to support the teaching of evolution, and far less likely to support the teaching of creationism than is the public at large. Most biology courses in the state include some evolutionary component. There is also reasonably strong sentiment against the teaching of creationism in the public schools. The amount and quality of that evolutionary teaching, however, are apparently well below the ideal. Teachers are not particularly sophisticated in their understanding of evolutionary theory; only a little over one-half of them feel that the theory itself is testable. Almost three-fourths of the teachers recognize, however, that creationism is not based on a solid scientific foundation. Approximately 10% of them have experienced pressure from pro- creationism forces either to remove evolution from the curriculum or to install a creation component. Pro-evolutionary forces are much less active. Teachers favoring religion and prayer in the public schools are significantly more likely to teach creationism in their biology courses than those opposed.


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