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Culturally relevant ecology Learning progressions key to environmental literacy within LTER

Abstract

Standardized test scores for middle school and high school students indicate a need for improvement in basic environmental science and related mathematical content. Surveys of teachers and science educators indicate a desire for more content-based, focused, and locally relevant professional development. The participation rates in environmental science fields do not reflect the demographics of society as a whole. Each of the preceding statements contributes to the broader dialogue on the need for an environmental science literacy framework. "Environmental science literacy"-the capacity to participate in and make decisions through evidence-based discussions of socio-ecological systems-is essential for many STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) careers and for responsible citizenship. Environmental science literacy requires citizens to understand, evaluate, and respond to multiple sources of information.

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