Published Online: December 8, 2015
Published in Print: December 9, 2015, as Science Education

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Science Education

"Textbooks of Doubt: Using Systemic Functional Analysis to Explore the Framing of Climate Change in Middle-School Science Textbooks"

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While President Barack Obama discussed the human impact on climate change in very certain terms at the recent climate talks in Paris, a new Stanford University study found middle school textbooks can send a different message.

Researchers looked at four 6th grade science textbooks that were published nearly a decade ago and are still being used in some California schools. The books used vague terms for climate change and its cause that were not scientifically accurate even when the texts were approved in the most recent California adoption process, in 2006.

The study found that textbooks generally used uncertain terms like "some scientists believe" for ideas that have been consensus for a decade or more. It also pointed to 2011 research saying that only about half of U.S. teens believe climate change is occurring.

Vol. 35, Issue 14, Page 5

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