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Scientifically literate action: Key barriers and facilitators across context and content

Crowell, A and Schunn, C (2014) Scientifically literate action: Key barriers and facilitators across context and content. Public Understanding of Science, 23 (6). 718 - 733. ISSN 0963-6625

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Scientific literacy can also be described as a level of public understanding of science that encourages one to act in concert with scientific consensus. Investigating actions concerned with environmental conservation, we examine the context specificity of this form of scientifically literate action and the differential motivations that predict such action across contexts. We report on a large sample of employees of a mixed urban/rural county in the USA, representing a diverse range of careers, who completed an anonymous survey about their environmental conservation actions at home, at work and in the public sphere. Results indicate that individuals engage at different action levels overall and for different reasons across contexts; limited support was found for the importance of perceived knowledge attainment ability in predicting scientifically informed actions. Implications for policy and program designers and scholars interested in scientific literacy are discussed. © The Author(s) 2013.


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Crowell, A
Schunn, Cschunn@pitt.eduSCHUNN0000-0003-3589-297X
Centers: Other Centers, Institutes, Offices, or Units > Learning Research & Development Center
Date: 1 January 2014
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Public Understanding of Science
Volume: 23
Number: 6
Page Range: 718 - 733
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1177/0963662512469780
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Psychology
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0963-6625
Date Deposited: 23 Sep 2014 16:39
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2019 15:56


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