November 20, 2002

Geographic Ignorance

Category: Society

The USA: This article on CNN states that 87% of young Americans, aged 18-24, can't find Iraq on a map. Though you never know how accurate these sorts of "shock results" surveys are, I'm not especially surprised, but I am suitably shocked. Apparantly 11% can't find the United States either. An optimist might argue that kids are just learning other things. Despite my general optimism, I still think 87% is a stinking disgrace.

Posted by Nick at November 20, 2002 06:10 PM


I think the problem is both lack of education on this subject and a lack of ability similar to someone who is relatively bright but poor in math, or languages, etc. Some people are simply not "wired" to form and retain cartographic information. I guess it also explains why relatively competent people can get lost even when only a few blocks from home.

Posted by: Carl Setzer on November 17, 2003 04:02 PM
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