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Posts Tagged ‘certainty’

Tolerating Ambiguity

Those of us who teach undergraduates often encounter a woeful complaint when we’ve presented them with conflicting factual claims, explanations, or theories: “But which one is true?”

desura.com

In part, this cry may reflect students’ urge to know what answer to give on the exam. But I think that it more reflects a general need for certainty. The teacher may want them to compare and contrast assertions, to appreciate that the science on many topics is still in flux, to understand that there may no “right answer” on many topics, but accepting that level of ambiguity is a hard task for many students– and people in general.

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