Teaching Controversial Issues Workshop

Following from the success of the Geological Society of America 2012 Annual Meeting technical session “Teaching Controversy in the K–16 Earth Science Classroom,” colleagues from formal and informal geoscience educational settings came together the following year to continue the conversation on teaching controversies through a set of workshops.

A pair of half-day workshops was offered at the GSA 2013 Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado, and the GSA 2014 Annual Meeting in Vancouver, BC.  Both workshops addressed the nature of controversial topics, provided strategies and theoretical perspectives for teaching controversial subjects, and highlighted what makes educational strategies effective or ineffective for addressing such topics.  The morning course focused on climate and energy, with the afternoon course addressing evolution of life and the Earth system.  These topics of evolution, climate change and energy were selected as they are issues deeply connected to our worldviews, and it is these connections and the differences between the connections that makes these issues controversial.

The workshop was targeted to K-16 teachers in formal and informal educational settings.  This website provides information presented at the workshop and supporting information that are helpful even to those unable to attend the sessions as GSA.

Both workshops in 2013 were co-sponsored by The Geological Society of America Teacher Advocate Program.