So that giant body of water is called an "ocean"?

  1. Wow, this is both embarassing and worrisome. National Geographic released the results of its 2002 Global Geographic Literacy Survey today. And it's not good.
    Despite the daily bombardment of news from the Middle East, Central Asia, and other world trouble spots, roughly 85 percent of young Americans could not find Afghanistan, Iraq, or Israel on a map, according to a new study.

    Americans ages 18 to 24 came in next to last among nine countries in the National Geographic-Roper 2002 Global Geographic Literacy Survey, which quizzed more than 3,000 young adults in Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Sweden, and the United States. Top scorers were young adults in Sweden, Germany, and Italy.

    Out of 56 questions that were asked across all countries surveyed, on average young Americans answered 23 questions correctly. Others outside the U.S., most notably young adults in Mexico, also struggled with basic geography facts. Young people in Canada and Great Britain fared almost as poorly as those in the U.S.

    Among young Americans' startling knowledge gaps, the study found that

    * nearly 30 percent of those surveyed could not find the Pacific Ocean, the world's largest body of water;
    * more than half--56 percent--were unable to locate India, home to 17 percent of people on Earth; and
    * only 19 percent could name four countries that officially acknowledge having nuclear weapons.
    Several perhaps interrelated factors affected performance--educational experience (including taking a geography course), international travel and language skills, a varied diet of news sources, and Internet use. Americans who reported that they accessed the Internet within the last 30 days scored 65 percent higher than those who did not.
    Take a sample survey yourself and see how you fare. The survey doesn't give you your final score, so you have to keep track yourself as you go. I missed 2 questions: the one about the US population, and I mis-identified a Scandinavian country on the map.

    How'd you do? And what do you think of the larger implications of how well--or poorly--young adults did worldwide?
    Last edit by Stargazer on Nov 22, '02
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  2. 25 Comments

  3. by   emily_mom
    Yay!! I got a 100%!!! I was pretty shocked to see that only 89% of Americans knew where the U.S. was on a map...what kind of people did they test?
  4. by   Ted
    It was the one on the "Biggest Religion of the World" (or something like that. . . .)

    I picked Islam. . . .

    :imbar
    (Oops!)

    So. . . . with one wrong, I got 95% correct!!! The usual percentage of time I get the narc count correct!

    Cheers!

    Ted
    Last edit by Ted on Nov 21, '02
  5. by   adrienurse
    Woohoo! 100% Amazes me sometimes how some people don't know their geography. I have a friend for exemple who is always asking me to describe where New Zealand is. I need to buy him an atlas for Christmas.
  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I missed the same one ted did....I voted Islam as the most followed religion......i guess I am not such an idiot after all...
  7. by   cactus wren
    I only missed the one about religon, also. Really did think that there were more Hindus than Christians.... But then I really think that todays educational system doesn`t teach, more like caretakers.............. Being a card carrying old fart, I had the advantage of a more well rounded education. IMHO )
  8. by   Q.
    I've never been good with geography, but this information you've released about the basic intelligence of our society is sad, but at the same time not surprising.

    Just this evening in class our professor was talking to us about developing our writing style and learning to ultimately produce a seminal scholarly work. What she finds common however, is BSN students coming into grad programs, or, in the BSN completion programs, students writing "and that bummed me out" kind of language in a scholarly paper!. Un-believe-able.
  9. by   kristi915
    I think I got like 16 out of 20 right.......I couldn't find my score
  10. by   whipping girl in 07
    Man, I missed that religion question, too!

    I just figured, all those Hindus in India, there must be more of them than Christians.

    I got the rest of them right, though. I don't think I learned all that in school; I think I've learned it from keeping up with world news and events. Two years ago I don't think I would have been able to find Afghanistan on an unlabeled map (although I would have known the general area to look in).

    Whoever said our schools are more caretakers than educators is right. I don't expect Ian to get a good education at school; I'll have to help him with that and hopefully foster within him the same love for books and information that his dad and I have.
  11. by   Nurse Ratched
    Lol - I missed the religion question as well . Otherwise 19/20. A disturbing number of young people surveyed missed questions like "where is the Pacific Ocean?"
  12. by   emily_mom
    Our dean said that 75% of new students come into our school with an 8th grade reading/writing level. I think that is appalling. I used to be an English major (once upon a time) and can't imagine this. Speech is usually the 2nd thing people notice about you after they see you. Is that what we want to portray? Are we all a bunch of babbling idiots? It's scary and also why I help my kid religiously at home.
  13. by   CEN35
    100% :d

    me
  14. by   Lausana
    I missed the one on US population :imbar I guessed a group too big...oh well, at least I could find the United States on the map??!!! only 89% from the US could find the US-there's really no good excuse for at least know where your home country is

    Maybe new globes should be made for American kids with a "You are here" X marking the US

    Interesting!

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