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Insects 2018, 9(2), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects9020040

Don’t Know Much about Bumblebees?—A Study about Secondary School Students’ Knowledge and Attitude Shows Educational Demand

Department of Biology Education, Institute of Organismic and Molecular Evolution, Johannes Gutenberg University, D-55099 Mainz, Germany
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Received: 30 January 2018 / Revised: 27 March 2018 / Accepted: 5 April 2018 / Published: 10 April 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Arthropod Education)
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Abstract

Many insects are threatened with extinction, which in the case of pollinating insects could lead to declining pollination services and reduced ecosystem biodiversity. This necessitates rethinking how we deal with nature in general. Schools are ideal places in which to instill a willingness to behave in an environmentally-friendly way. Whereas scientific studies and school textbooks stress the importance of honeybees as pollinators, the role of bumblebees is either underestimated or neglected. The aim of this study was to provide information concerning student knowledge and attitudes, which are important factors of an individual’s environmental awareness. A questionnaire with closed and open questions was developed, which also included drawing and species identification tasks. We surveyed 870 German secondary school students between 9 and 20 years of age. Our results indicate limited knowledge of bumblebees by students of all grades. Knowledge increased with higher grades but only with a small effect size. The attitude of students towards bumblebees was generally positive; however, this positivity declined with increasing grade of the participants. This correlation also had a small effect size. Our results are discussed, with a particular focus on future educational demand. View Full-Text
Keywords: Bumblebees; Bombus; pollinators; insects; knowledge; attitude; biology education; biodiversity; conservation; environmental awareness Bumblebees; Bombus; pollinators; insects; knowledge; attitude; biology education; biodiversity; conservation; environmental awareness
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Sieg, A.-K.; Teibtner, R.; Dreesmann, D. Don’t Know Much about Bumblebees?—A Study about Secondary School Students’ Knowledge and Attitude Shows Educational Demand. Insects 2018, 9, 40.

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