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ViewsofMars
#97
May26-10, 05:07 PM
P: 463
Quote Quote by FD3SA View Post

Finally, I firmly admit that I have no firm scientific answer to questions like "are males predisposed to mathematical ability vs. females". But I do have some insight as to how males and females differ from an evolutionary perspective; this view lends itself to the formulation of some interesting hypothesis. I merely wish that I could discuss my hypothesis with an audience that views this problem objectively. The last six pages have left my curiosity in a dire thirst for objective discussion.
Hi FD3SA, thank you for your honesty. I suggest that you ask a Mentor for help. Hopefully, you might be able to discuss this on another forum. I for one would be interested in your comments. I did present a document sometime back that may be of help to you. I'll search for it.

I've found it! This is what I posted to Physics Forums > Other Sciences > Social Sciences - Topic: On the issue of kids not pursuing engineering/science/math these days.
Msg. 143

The National Science Board’s newly released SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING INDICTORS 2010. It's 566 pages. ( I love to read.) Here are excerpts from a few chapters.
Chapter 7. Science and Technology: Public Attitudes and Understanding
7-4
Information Sources, Interest, and Involvement

Television and the Internet are the primary sources

Americans use for science and technology (S&T) information.
The Internet is the main source of information for learning about specific scientific issues such as global climate change or biotechnology.

-More Americans select television as their primary source of S&T information than any other medium.
-The Internet ranks second among sources of S&T information, and its margin over other sources is large and has been growing.
-Internet users do not always assume that online S&T information is accurate. About four out of five have checked on the reliability of information at least once.

Continuing a long-standing pattern, Americans consistently express high levels of interest in S&T in surveys. However, other indicators, such as the types of news they follow closely, suggest a lower level of interest.

-High levels of interest in S&T are part of a long-standing trend, with more than 80% of Americans reporting they were “very” or “moderately” interested in new scientific discoveries. But relative to other news topics, interest in S&T is not particularly high.

-As with many news topics, the percentage of Americans who say they follow “science and technology” news “closely” has declined over the last 10 years.

-Recent surveys in other countries, including South Korea, China, and much of Europe, indicate that the overall level of public interest in “new scientific discoveries” and “use of new inventions and technologies” tends to be higher in the United States.

-Interest in “environmental pollution” or “the environment” is similarly high in the U.S., Europe, South Korea, and Brazil. About 9 in 10 respondents in each country expressed interest in this topic.

In 2008, a majority of Americans said they had visited an informal science institution such as a zoo or a natural history museum within the past year. This proportion is generally consistent with results from surveys conducted since 1979, but slightly lower than the proportion recorded in 2001.

-Americans with more formal education are much more likely to engage in informal science activities.
-Compared with the United States, visits to informal science institutions tend to be less common in Europe, Japan, China, Russia, and Brazil.

Public Knowledge About S&T

Many Americans do not give correct answers to questions about basic factual knowledge of science or the scientific inquiry process.
-Americans’ factual knowledge about science is positively related to their formal education level, income level, the number of science and math courses they have taken, and their verbal ability.
-People who score well on long-standing knowledge measures that test for information typically learned in school also appear to know more about new science related topics
such as nanotechnology.

Levels of factual knowledge of science in the United States are comparable to those in Europe and appear to be higher than in Japan, China, or Russia.
-In the United States, levels of factual knowledge of science have been stable; Europe shows evidence of recent improvement in factual knowledge of science.
-In European countries, China, and Korea demographic variations in factual knowledge are similar to those in the United States.

Compared to the mid-1990s, Americans show a modest improvement in understanding the process of scientific inquiry in recent years.
-Americans’ understanding of scientific inquiry is strongly associated with their factual knowledge of science and level of education.
-Americans’ scores on questions measuring their understanding of the logic of experimentation and controlling variables do not differ by sex. In contrast, men tend to score higher than women on factual knowledge questions in the physical sciences.

Public Attitudes About S&T in General

Americans in all demographic groups consistently endorse the past achievements and future promise of S&T.
-In 2008, 68% of Americans said that the benefits of scientific research have strongly outweighed the harmful results, and only 10% said harmful results slightly or strongly outweighed the benefits.
-Nearly 9 in 10 Americans agree with the statement “because of science and technology, there will be more opportunities for the next generation.”
-Americans also express some reservations about science. Nearly half of Americans agree that “science makes our way of life change too fast.”


7-15


International Comparisons
Using identical questions, recent surveys conducted in other countries indicate that the overall level of self-reported public interest in S&T is lower than in the United States. Between 75% and 80% of survey respondents in South Korea, China, and Europe said they were “very” or “moderately” interested in “new scientific discoveries” and “use of new inventions and technologies” compared to 86% and 88% respectively of Americans in the 2008 GSS, respectively (appendix table 7-4) (KOFAC 2009; CRISP 2008; EC 2005).

Using slightly different questions, about three-quarters of Brazilians said they were “very interested” or “a little interested” in “science and technology” (MCT of Brazil 2006). In Malaysia, 58% of the respondents said they were “interested” or “very interested” in the “latest inventions in new technology” and 51% in the “latest inventions in science”
(MASTIC 2004).

In the 2005 European survey (called the 2005 “Eurobarometer”), there was considerable variation among different countries in self-reported interest in S&T-related issues, and the overall level of interest was down from the most recent survey in 1992. In both the United States and in Europe, men showed more interest in S&T than women. For more recent European data on interest in scientific research in general, see sidebar “Scientific Research in the Media in Europe.”5 Interest in environmental issues is similarly high in the United States, Europe, South Korea, and Brazil—about 9 in 10 respondents in each country or region expressed interest in this topic, although slight variations in survey terminology should be taken into account.6 In Malaysia, interest in
“environmental pollution” was lower (61% said they were
“interested” or “very interested” in this issue).

Like Americans, Europeans and Brazilians are more interested in medicine than in S&T in general. In the United States, nearly everyone was interested in new medical discoveries (94%) ; in Brazil, most people (91%) were interested in “medicine and health” issues. In Europe, South Korea, and China, interest in new medical discoveries seemed to be lower—between 77% and 83% said they were “very” or “moderately” interested in this issue. In Malaysia, 59% indicated they were “interested” or “very interested” in the “latest inventions in the field of medicine.”7
http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/seind10/pdf/seind10.pdf


The National Science Board’s newly released SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING INDICTORS 2010. It's 566 pages. ( I love to read.) Here are excerpts from a few chapters.
Chapter 7. Science and Technology: Public Attitudes and Understanding
7-4
Information Sources, Interest, and Involvement

Television and the Internet are the primary sources

Americans use for science and technology (S&T) information.
The Internet is the main source of information for learning about specific scientific issues such as global climate change or biotechnology.

-More Americans select television as their primary source of S&T information than any other medium.
-The Internet ranks second among sources of S&T information, and its margin over other sources is large and has been growing.
-Internet users do not always assume that online S&T information is accurate. About four out of five have checked on the reliability of information at least once.

Continuing a long-standing pattern, Americans consistently express high levels of interest in S&T in surveys. However, other indicators, such as the types of news they follow closely, suggest a lower level of interest.
-High levels of interest in S&T are part of a long-standing trend, with more than 80% of Americans reporting they were “very” or “moderately” interested in new scientific
discoveries. But relative to other news topics, interest in S&T is not particularly high.
-As with many news topics, the percentage of Americans who say they follow “science and technology” news “closely” has declined over the last 10 years.
-Recent surveys in other countries, including South Korea, China, and much of Europe, indicate that the overall level of public interest in “new scientific discoveries” and “use of new inventions and technologies” tends to be higher in the United States.
-Interest in “environmental pollution” or “the environment” is similarly high in the U.S., Europe, South Korea, and Brazil. About 9 in 10 respondents in each country expressed interest in this topic.

In 2008, a majority of Americans said they had visited an informal science institution such as a zoo or a natural history museum within the past year. This proportion is generally consistent with results from surveys conducted since 1979, but slightly lower than the proportion recorded in 2001.
-Americans with more formal education are much more likely to engage in informal science activities.
-Compared with the United States, visits to informal science institutions tend to be less common in Europe, Japan, China, Russia, and Brazil.

Public Knowledge About S&T

Many Americans do not give correct answers to questions about basic factual knowledge of science or the scientific inquiry process.
-Americans’ factual knowledge about science is positively related to their formal education level, income level, the number of science and math courses they have taken, and their verbal ability.
-People who score well on long-standing knowledge measures that test for information typically learned in school also appear to know more about new science related topics
such as nanotechnology.

Levels of factual knowledge of science in the United States are comparable to those in Europe and appear to be higher than in Japan, China, or Russia.
-In the United States, levels of factual knowledge of science have been stable; Europe shows evidence of recent improvement in factual knowledge of science.
-In European countries, China, and Korea demographic variations in factual knowledge are similar to those in the United States.

Compared to the mid-1990s, Americans show a modest improvement in understanding the process of scientific inquiry in recent years.
-Americans’ understanding of scientific inquiry is strongly associated with their factual knowledge of science and level of education.
-Americans’ scores on questions measuring their understanding of the logic of experimentation and controlling variables do not differ by sex. In contrast, men tend to score higher than women on factual knowledge questions in the physical sciences.

Public Attitudes About S&T in General

Americans in all demographic groups consistently endorse the past achievements and future promise of S&T.
-In 2008, 68% of Americans said that the benefits of scientific research have strongly outweighed the harmful results, and only 10% said harmful results slightly or strongly outweighed the benefits.
-Nearly 9 in 10 Americans agree with the statement “because of science and technology, there will be more opportunities for the next generation.”
-Americans also express some reservations about science. Nearly half of Americans agree that “science makes our way of life change too fast.”


7-15

International Comparisons

Using identical questions, recent surveys conducted in other countries indicate that the overall level of self-reported public interest in S&T is lower than in the United States. Between 75% and 80% of survey respondents in South Korea, China, and Europe said they were “very” or “moderately” interested in “new scientific discoveries” and “use of new inventions and technologies” compared to 86% and 88% respectively of Americans in the 2008 GSS, respectively (appendix table 7-4) (KOFAC 2009; CRISP 2008; EC 2005).

Using slightly different questions, about three-quarters of Brazilians said they were “very interested” or “a little interested” in “science and technology” (MCT of Brazil 2006).
In Malaysia, 58% of the respondents said they were “interested” or “very interested” in the “latest inventions in new technology” and 51% in the “latest inventions in science”
(MASTIC 2004).

In the 2005 European survey (called the 2005 “Eurobarometer”), there was considerable variation among different countries in self-reported interest in S&T-related issues, and the overall level of interest was down from the most recent survey in 1992. In both the United States and in Europe, men showed more interest in S&T than women. For more recent European data on interest in scientific research in general, see sidebar “Scientific Research in the Media in Europe.”5 Interest in environmental issues is similarly high in the United States, Europe, South Korea, and Brazil—about 9 in 10 respondents in each country or region expressed interest in this topic, although slight variations in survey terminology should be taken into account.6 In Malaysia, interest in “environmental pollution” was lower (61% said they were “interested” or “very interested” in this issue).

Like Americans, Europeans and Brazilians are more interested in medicine than in S&T in general. In the United States, nearly everyone was interested in new medical discoveries (94%) ; in Brazil, most people (91%) were interested in “medicine and health” issues. In Europe, South Korea, and China, interest in new medical discoveries seemed to be lower—between 77% and 83% said they were “very” or “moderately” interested in this issue. In Malaysia, 59% indicated they were “interested” or “very interested” in the “latest inventions in the field of medicine.”7
http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/seind10/pdf/seind10.pdf
Be sure to read within that pdf the following topics:
Chapter 1. Elementary and Secondary Mathematics and Science Chapter 2. Higher Education in Science and Engineering
Chapter 3. Science and Engineering Labor
Chapter 4. Research and Development: National Trends and International Linkages
Chapter 5. Academic Research and Development
Chapter 6. Industry, Technology, and the Global Marketplace
Chapter 7. Science and Technology: Public Attitudes and Understanding