Rendiconti Online della Società Geologica Italiana - Vol. 49/2019

Geoscience knowledge in Italy at the end of high School

Fabio Pieraccioni (1), Elena Bonaccorsi (1), Anna Gioncada (1), Luca Bastiani (2) & Alessandra Borghini (3)
(1) Earth Science Department, University of Pisa, Italy. (2) Epidemiology and health Research Lab, Institute of Clinical Physiology, IFC, National Research Council of Italy - CNR. (3) PhD Tuscany School - Earth Science, University of Pisa, Italy. Corresponding author e-mail:

Volume: 49/2019
Pages: 78-84


A survey aimed at an assessment of geoscience understanding of Italian students at the end of high school has been carried out from 2015 to 2018 by means of the IMES (Individuation of Misconceptions in Earth Sciences) questionnaire. The survey, conducted on freshmen of several courses at the University of Pisa, has revealed the persistence of alternative conceptions about different geoscience topics. In this paper, the psychometric validation and the latest results of IMES are presented, together with an analysis of textbooks used in Italian high school, aimed at investigating if, besides other factors, the way geoscience concepts are presented in textbooks may contribute to the birth or confirmation of concepts alternative to those agreed upon by the scientific community.


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