Evolution is essential to our curriculum and to scientific literacy. Imagine teaching social science without teaching history; students would lack perspective on events going on today. Similarly, to understand the big picture of biology, students need to understand life on Earth in terms of its history and its future the changing life forms and ecosystems that have arisen and changed over billions of years, as well as the mechanisms that have brought about those changes.
The Understanding Evolution project aims to help instructors develop student understanding of:
As is true of any subject, to teach evolution successfully, teachers need to be prepared with a conceptual understanding of the topic and with effective curricular strategies. Teachers that develop a depth of knowledge beyond what is actually expected of students will be able to confidently adjust instruction in response to students' needs and inquiries. This is particularly true in the teaching of evolution, where students' questions can be numerous and challenging.
- Basic evolutionary patterns and processes
- Evolutionary theory's ability to explain phenomena across the many subdisciplines of biology
- The many applications of evolutionary theory, both in solving real world problems and in scientific research
- The evidence supporting evolutionary theory
We've assembled a variety of resources to help you increase student understanding of evolution. To improve your own content knowledge, explore Evolution 101 and our resource library. To prepare yourself with lesson plans, teaching tips, and pedagogical strategies, visit a Teacher's Lounge or explore the all-level resources listed below and to the right.