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Sustainability 2018, 10(9), 3129; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10093129

A Systematic Initial Study of Civic Scientific Literacy in China: Cross-National Comparable Results from Scientific Cognition to Sustainable Literacy

1
School of Mathematical Sciences, Faculty of Science, Zhejiang University, 4/F, Teaching Bldg. 1138 Zheda Road, Hangzhou 310027, Zhejiang, China
2
Department of Civil Engineering, College of Engineering, National Kaohsiung University of Science and Technology, 5/F, Civil Engr. Bldg. 1415 Jiangong Road, Sanmin Dist., Kaohsiung 80778, Taiwan
3
Laboratorio de Pesquisa do Centro de Processamento de Dados, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universidade de Macau, G001, Bldg. N21, Avenida da Vitoria, Ilha da Montanha, Macau SAR, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 July 2018 / Revised: 18 August 2018 / Accepted: 20 August 2018 / Published: 2 September 2018
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Abstract

Civic scientific literacy (CSL) is an important factor for the development of any country, and this is especially true for a country which is under development and at the same time pursues sustainability. In this article, we conduct the firstly systematic study of CSL in China based on survey data in 2013. Under the multi-dimension CSL framework and by using item response theory, we assess the CSL level in China, which can be fairly compared with that in U.S. and Europe (US-EU). The comparable survey results provided a number of implicational findings: for example, the status of CSL of China in 2013 would have ranked as middling and poor compared to the CSL results for the various US-EU countries in 1995 and 2005, respectively. Some group-based analyses were also conducted to show how people’s attitudes to the environment and socio-environmental behaviours correlate with the CSL-qualified rate in China. The empirical results provided by this study not only can serve as references for improving CSL in China or other emerging countries that also address the sustainability issues during development, but could also serve as indicators for future studies (e.g., in causational modelling). View Full-Text
Keywords: civic scientific literacy (CSL); sustainable literacy; item response theory (IRT); item selection; cross-national and in-country comparisons; socio-environment investigations and data analytics civic scientific literacy (CSL); sustainable literacy; item response theory (IRT); item selection; cross-national and in-country comparisons; socio-environment investigations and data analytics
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Wu, S.; Zhang, Y.; Zhuang, Z.-Y. A Systematic Initial Study of Civic Scientific Literacy in China: Cross-National Comparable Results from Scientific Cognition to Sustainable Literacy. Sustainability 2018, 10, 3129.

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