Many studies have assessed whether and to what degree students (grade-schoolers to undergraduates), teachers, and the public in general accept and understand evolution. However, very little information has been available about the level of understanding of students pursuing an advanced postgraduate degree in science. The study discussed in this article involved a survey of graduate students from four science colleges at a midsized Canadian university. Encouragingly, the results indicate that graduate students in diverse disciplines exhibit a better understanding of evolutionary concepts than do students at other levels. However, a working knowledge of evolutionary mechanisms may remain elusive, and some misconceptions may persist, even at this advanced level.
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Vol. 59 • No. 9