1 in 4 Americans unaware that Earth circles Sun


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Nashy

It's sad really.  But I can almost guarantee that the USA isn't alone in this sort of thing. 

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Andre S.

How do 2,200 participants in a survey = 1 in 4 of all Americans?

Basic statistics. That's a good sample size for achieving a high degree of confidence in the accuracy of the results. See Determining Sample Size.

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adrynalyne

Basic statistics. That's a good sample size for achieving a high degree of confidence in the accuracy of the results. See Determining Sample Size.

Not even remotely true unless they get a proper sampling of education. They obviously found a lot of idiots to take the survey. There is nothing accurate about this.

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adrynalyne

Well the americans also use wrong names all over the place...

For example they say  million billion trillion, but it is  million milliard billion trillion. 

 

 

or the name of the element aluminium is misspelled as aluminum

Aluminum has been called as such since the 1800s. In fact, the scientist who found it spelled it both ways and so did his colleagues.

 

I guess you don't realize English in the US differs from the UK.  That doesn't make it wrong.

 

http://www.worldwidewords.org/articles/aluminium.htm

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hagjohn

Yeah, science... something Republican's don't like.

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adrynalyne

Yeah, science... something Republican's don't like.

It was only a matter of time before some tried to put a political spin on this.

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KeR

It was only a matter of time before some tried to put a political spin on this.

But it is, how is someone supposed to know about the Earth and the Sun if they are thought Creationism for instance, which in fact is a huge thing with Republicans pushing for it being fought in schools. Just look at what is going on in Texas.

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hagjohn

It was only a matter of time before some tried to put a political spin on this.

 

Do you think this type of thing lives in a vacuum? ... which is something else I learned in science class in high school. It's all about conservatives keeping people uninformed. 

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adrynalyne

But it is, how is someone supposed to know about the Earth and the Sun if they are thought Creationism for instance, which in fact is a huge thing with Republicans pushing for it being fought in schools. Just look at what is going on in Texas.

Does creationism teach that the sun orbits the earth? I don't think so. Therefore politics doesn't belong here.

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MandateOfHeaven

I think this is exaggerated. The reason I think this is because, unlike most other countries, the U.S., has a much more generous immigration policy, which allows many poor, uneducated folks into the country.  Therefore, increasing the number of the "uneducated."

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Andre S.

Not even remotely true unless they get a proper sampling of education. They obviously found a lot of idiots to take the survey. There is nothing accurate about this.

I was answering a question about sample size. 2200 is a good size.

 

You're arguing that the sample is not representative, which is another question.

 

Now, why do you think the sample was not representative? You can't infer that from the results. The survey was performed by the National Science Foundation, which I'm guessing knows a thing or two about how to conduct surveys.

 

It's too easy to dismiss a survey by suggesting methodological flaws without backing your assertions.

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adrynalyne

I was answering a question about sample size. 2200 is a good size.

 

You're arguing that the sample is not representative, which is another question.

 

Now, why do you think the sample was not representative? You can't infer that from the results. The survey was performed by the National Science Foundation, which I'm guessing knows a thing or two about how to conduct surveys.

 

It's too easy to dismiss a survey by suggesting methodological flaws without backing your assertions.

  Can you back the assertion that this survey is valid?

 

How many people do you know think the sun orbits this planet?  I don't know a single soul.  My daughter knew this by 2nd grade.  I've asked friends and family.  Nobody they know thinks this either.

 

Nobody in this thread has stated that they thought this.  Nobody in this thread has mentioned that they know people who think this.

 

So what makes you think this survey is valid other than it was performed by the NSF?  That feels a lot like blind faith.  Not unlike those who say, its in the Bible, to provide proof of their claims.

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Andre S.

  Can you back the assertion that this survey is valid?

 

How many people do you know think the sun orbits this planet?  I don't know a single soul.  My daughter knew this by 2nd grade.  I've asked friends and family.  Nobody they know thinks this either.

 

Nobody in this thread has stated that they thought this.  Nobody in this thread has mentioned that they know people who think this.

 

So what makes you think this survey is valid other than it was performed by the NSF?  That feels a lot like blind faith.  Not unlike those who say, its in the Bible, to provide proof of their claims.

Well, I certainly think that the NSF's formal survey is a more valuable point of data than your informal survey based on about 10 persons that all know each other. "I don't know anyone like that" is biased data. I don't know anyone that can't read or write, yet it's a proven fact that 33% of people in Quebec have great difficulties reading or writing.

 

You failed to point out any methodological flaws so your critique comes as empty, and it makes no sense for you to put more trust into anectodal evidence.

 

The NSF is a competent body that uses sound scientific processes such as peer review to validate its research. You are the one making an extraordinary claim (i.e. that the research was flawed), so the burden of proof is on you.

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Gerowen

Very interesting, but I find it hard to believe this.  I've been around for a day or two, traveled all over the U.S., and live in one of the most "redneck" areas, and I've never met anybody who didn't know the earth revolves around the sun.  We were taught in school the basic principles that the Earth revolves around the sun, rotates and tilts on its axis, and that Pluto was the 9th planet.  There are some onesie twosie people around here who don't believe the Earth goes around the sun, but they're all REALLY old people who went to the beach one time in their life and watched the sun go down into the ocean...I wonder where in the heck they found the people for this survey.

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adrynalyne

Well, I certainly think that the NSF's formal survey is a more valuable point of data than your informal survey based on about 10 persons that all know each other. "I don't know anyone like that" is biased data. I don't know anyone that can't read or write, yet it's a proven fact that 33% of people in Quebec have great difficulties reading or writing.

 

You failed to point out any methodological flaws so your critique comes as empty, and it makes no sense for you to put more trust into anectodal evidence.

 

The NSF is a competent body that uses sound scientific processes such as peer review to validate its research. You are the one making an extraordinary claim (i.e. that the research was flawed), so the burden of proof is on you.

Telephone surveys are also biased in accordance to those willing to take them.  It doesn't take into consideration background, education level, or anything else past  warm body on the other end.  People also can lie on their answers (such as education level) and no amount of statistics takes that into consideration.

 

As for my survey of 10 people...do you somehow know how many people I asked?  What is your evidence for that assertion?

 

You never answered me.  How many people do you know think the sun revolves around the earth?

 

Nobody else in this thread believes to be a valid survey, so why you are singling me out and my "flawed" observations, I don't know.

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Anibal P

Well, I certainly think that the NSF's formal survey is a more valuable point of data than your informal survey based on about 10 persons that all know each other. "I don't know anyone like that" is biased data. I don't know anyone that can't read or write, yet it's a proven fact that 33% of people in Quebec have great difficulties reading or writing.

 

You failed to point out any methodological flaws so your critique comes as empty, and it makes no sense for you to put more trust into anectodal evidence.

 

The NSF is a competent body that uses sound scientific processes such as peer review to validate its research. You are the one making an extraordinary claim (i.e. that the research was flawed), so the burden of proof is on you.

 

You're forgetting that the NSF is a White house spokesentity, everything that comes from them is to push an agenda, just like 99% of all other science organizations. We haven't had a truly unbiased Science based organization in decades, all you have to do is follow the money to see the puppeteers 

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NinjaGinger

Well you learn something every day. I always thought the World revolved around the USA, but the Sun?

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dead.cell

There's a lot of things that should be basic knowledge, that people just don't hold onto simply because they don't care about it.

 

I mean, just look at IT for example: You might know a guy that can tell you every goddamn thing in existence there is to knowing about pipes, fittings, proper procedures for install, repairs, and so on, but you try to show them Windows 8 and they fall apart. :laugh:

 

It's not cool to be dumb, I'm not saying that at all, but if it doesn't interest you, I can't exactly blame you... so long as the knowledge doesn't effect your everyday livelihood.

 

Personally, I'd rather people have a better understanding of money management, traffic laws, and how to operate their vehicles and devices. Last thing you want is to be rear ended by the guy who can tell you about the sun and the earth, yet can't comprehend the lines on the road...

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Andre S.

Nobody else in this thread believes to be a valid survey, so why you are singling me out and my "flawed" observations, I don't know.

 Most people in this thread actually did not question the survey. You asked a question, so I answered.

 

Telephone surveys are also biased in accordance to those willing to take them.

Where did you get that this is a telephone survey? Their methodology and sources (p.23) are publically available.

 

As for my survey of 10 people...do you somehow know how many people I asked?  What is your evidence for that assertion?

Obviously I invented the number, the point you may have missed is that your sample (friends and family) is not significant nor random enough to provide any statistically valuable information.

 

You never answered me.  How many people do you know think the sun revolves around the earth?

My whole point was that this is biased and irrelevant information; I provided a very similar example (about illiteracy) to illustrate. The people I know happen to be people who generally have similar interests and a similar level of education, which isn't representative of the general population, so to deduce general facts from such a small and biased sample is not valid.

 

You're forgetting that the NSF is a White house spokesentity, everything that comes from them is to push an agenda, just like 99% of all other science organizations. 

The study is a compilation of data from various independent sources, that all meet rigorous methodological criteria; its results and methods are publically available. The study is made year after year for many countries and this year's results are nothing out of the norm or exceptional.

 

This attitude towards science is truly worrying. That you can so easily dismiss it with nothing but FUD, and base your opinions on limited, statistically insignificant data instead. The results of the study aren't even surprising. It's not because something makes the headline of an article that it's actually new or strange information.

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adrynalyne

 

 

Where did you get that this is a telephone survey? Their methodology and sources (p.23) are publically available.

It is pretty obvious where I got their data collection.

 

Look at their sources.

 

I specifically mentioned NSF's method because you seem so hellbent on them being an incredibly reliable resource.

 

Screenshot+2014-02-16+14.40.26.png

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This attitude towards science is truly worrying. That you can so easily dismiss it with nothing but FUD, and base your opinions on limited, statistically insignificant data instead. The results of the study aren't even surprising. It's not because something makes the headline of an article that it's actually new or strange information.

 
No, what is worrying is that you are so quick to dismiss the intelligence of a country full of people based on 2200 surveys.  Your willingness to believe that 1 in 4 Americans are idiots is sad.  Yes, I feel that people who do not know this are either idiots, or under the age of 5.
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Andre S.

 

It is pretty obvious where I got their data collection.

 

Look at their sources.

 

I specifically mentioned NSF's method because you seem so hellbent on them being an incredibly reliable resource.

 

Screenshot+2014-02-16+14.40.26.png

Well, first, you're showing the wrong source here; the table from where that particular number is derived is on page 23, which cites the NORC as its source, and the NORC's collection methods are "Face-to-face interviews, supplemented by telephone interviews" (from the same table you partially showed).

 

Secondly, to show that this collection method induces bias, you'd have to :

1) Identify a bias in the respondants due to the collection method used

2) Show how that bias relates to the question being answered

3) Show that this bias was not accounted for in the survey

 

Which you don't.

 

No, what is worrying is that you are so quick to dismiss the intelligence of a country full of people based on 2200 surveys.  Your willingness to believe that 1 in 4 Americans are idiots is sad.  Yes, I feel that people who do not know this are either idiots, or under the age of 5.

I don't need "willingness to believe", I just go with the most reliable source of information; sorry for not picking your anectodal evidence.

 

I don't understand what you find so surprising about these results, either. Did you know that the illiteracy rate in the US is 15%, and 21% read below 5th grade level? Or do you dismiss that data as well? 

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adrynalyne

Well, first, you're showing the wrong source here; the table from where that particular number is derived is on page 23, which cites the NORC as its source, and the NORC's collection methods are "Face-to-face interviews, supplemented by telephone interviews" (from the same table you partially showed).

 

Secondly, to show that this collection method induces bias, you'd have to :

1) Identify a bias in the respondants due to the collection method used

2) Show how that bias relates to the question being answered

3) Show that this bias was not accounted for in the survey

 

Which you don't.

 

I don't need "willingness to believe", I just go with the most reliable source of information; sorry for not picking your anectodal evidence.

 

I don't understand what you find so surprising about these results, either. Did you know that the illiteracy rate in the US is 15%, and 21% read below 5th grade level? Or do you dismiss that data as well? 

 

 

Well, its on the internet, so it must be true.  Right?

 

You can discuss this all you want, but 2,200 participants in a survey will never be an accurate result for an entire country.  I mean, if you really think that 2,200 people speak for 308 million...then I have some ocean front property to sell you in Arizona.

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pack34

Well, its on the internet, so it must be true.  Right?

 

You can discuss this all you want, but 2,200 participants in a survey will never be an accurate result for an entire country.  I mean, if you really think that 2,200 people speak for 308 million...then I have some ocean front property to sell you in Arizona.

 

Sort of an ironic post in a thread about scientific ignorance in America.

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adrynalyne

Sort of an ironic post in a thread about scientific ignorance in America.

Which part?  Believing 2,200 people can accurately sample 308 million?

 

I agree.

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