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Quick Look: Why Scientists Need An Image Makeover

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This article is more than 9 years old.

The fascinating premise of this article comes from a study that shows the following:

"The students who learned about scientists’ struggles developed less-stereotyped images of scientists, became more interested in science, remembered the material better, and did better at complex open-ended problem-solving tasks related to the lesson—while the students who read the achievement-based text actually developed more stereotypical images of scientists."

A white lab coat. An unsmiling expression. Thick glasses and unkempt hair. In one hand, a device replete with dials and gauges; in the other, a beaker bubbling over with a toxic-looking liquid. This image, which owes more to the movies than to the laboratory, is nevertheless what many students think of when they hear the word "scientist."

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