Quote: 13.7 hours of education

John Hawks, summarizing a recent study on the state of our science education:

We’re entering an age in which health decisions will be made based on genetic information — when everyone may know their own gene sequences if they want to. New diseases are emerging, new crops are being developed, and new organisms are being transplanted from one continent to another. Decisions about the economic development of entire regions — perhaps entire nations — are now subject to the evaluation of biodiversity, including threatened and endangered species.

The people making these decisions ten to twenty years from now will have an average of 13.7 hours of education on evolution.

I think positive change in our culture’s approach to scientific literacy is coming. Painfully slow, but coming.

Update 6-22-08: Hawks has a nice post up arguing that evolution education matters– that evolutionary theory sheds light on how we should think about many pressing current issues.