Why Scientific Perceptions Persist Even with Facts & Teaching

There was a very interesting study completed at the University of Michigan entitled When Corrections Fail: The persistence of political misperceptions by researchers Brendan Nyhan, School of Public Health, University of Michigan, and Jason Reifler, Department of Political Science, Georgia State University.  This study, although in the realm of political behavior, has strong implications for science education, especially in the teaching of science-related social issues.

In their abstract (which follows), Nyhan and Reifler point out that even when individuals are provided with corrective knowledge about a particular issue, some respondents actually increase their misperceptions:

An extensive literature addresses citizen ignorance, but very little research focuses on misperceptions.

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