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Abstract

Discussing the teaching of evolution with concerned parents is a challenge to any science teacher. Using the medical education pedagogy of standardized individuals within the field of teacher education, this article addresses how preservice science teachers elected to verbally interact with standardized parents who questioned the teaching of evolution and proposed alternative curricula. Analysis of video recordings of the simulated interactions yielded three primary themes connected to teachers' understandings of what “counts” as science, teachers' justifications for teaching evolution, and teachers' explanations of the impact of teaching evolution. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Sci Ed94:552–570, 2010