Research ArticleSOCIAL SCIENCES

Amazon conservation and students’ interests for biodiversity: The need to boost science education in Brazil

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Science Advances  26 Aug 2020:
Vol. 6, no. 35, eabb0110
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abb0110

Abstract

Brazilian high school students took part in an international research program in the period 2007–2014, and a data bank with national significance was created. SPSS TwoStep clustering analysis indicated two homogeneous groups regarding the level of interest for the surrounding biodiversity. Amazonian students were among the high-interest group and would like to study more deeply local living beings, contrary to the tendency to favor large exotic animals in Brazilian biology curricula. Students from the southeast were grouped in the low-interest group. However, students from both regions agree upon the urgent need for actions to protect the environment and strongly disagree that this is a role expected from rich countries only. Given the importance of the local communities in conservation and the current prominence of young people in environmental issues, a boost in science education is needed in Brazil, enhancing the study of rainforest biota in the Brazilian curricula.

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