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Glenn Branch

Glenn Branch is the Deputy Director of the National Center for Science Education. He is a prominent critic of creationism and intelligent design and an activist against campaigns of suppressing teaching of evolution and climate change in school education.[1][2]

Glenn Branch
Education M.A., UCLA
Years active 2002 to current
Employer National Center for Science Education
Notable work "Not in Our Classrooms: Why Intelligent Design is Wrong for Our Schools"
Title Deputy Director, NCSE


Early lifeEdit

Branch earned his Masters of Arts degree in Philosophy from the University of California, Los Angeles. He won The Rudolph and Ina Carnap Prize for excellent philosophical writing by a graduate student in 1997-98,[3] and the Yost Prize For Excellence In Teaching in 1994-95.[4] He joined the National Center for Science Education in 1999 and has served as the deputy director since 2002.[5] Branch is member of editorial boards of multiple journals.[6][7]


Branch is a prominent critic of creationism and intelligent design having published multiple papers on both.[8][9] He emphasizes the need of appreciating creationists actions at the different levels of educational governance, and need of changing tactics in fighting against it. He believes scientists are in a unique position to defend the teaching of evolution, both by resisting creationist incursions as they occur and by helping to improve the teaching of evolution at both the precollege and college levels.[10] Branch criticized how creationists call evolution a theory in a NPR interview. "In everyday conversation, a theory is a hunch or guess,... That's not how scientists use it. For scientists, a theory is a systematic explanation for a range of natural phenomena."[11]

Branch was involved in the campaign against "Bibliography of Supplementary Resources for Ohio Science Education" by the Discovery Institute.[12] The staff of the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) analyzed the Bibliography with the assistance of many of the authors of the publications listed in it, finding that the Discovery Institute (1) misrepresents the significance of the publications in the Bibliography, (2) describes the publications in the Bibliography frequently in an inaccurate and tendentious manner, and (3) fails to present any principled basis for the selection of the publications or any pedagogical rationale for their use in the classroom. NCSE concluded that the only purpose of the Discovery Institute's Bibliography is to mislead members of the Board and of the public about the status of evolution.

He was highly involved in the effort to combat New Mexico's proposed change in Science standards in 2017. NCSE coordinated the effort to educate the public through journalists and activists and was able to successfully affect the regulators, and new Mexico's Public Education Department announced that instead of the flawed standards originally proposed, it would be adopting the Next Generation Science Standards.[13]

Branch is a vocal critic against the movement of climate denial. He believes one of the most effective ways to improve awareness of climate change is through school education by science teachers.[14] He states that this is a difficult task due to multiple issues of limited federal role, state attacks on science, local attitudes, etc.[2]

Selected publicationsEdit


  1. ^ a b "Google Books". 
  2. ^ a b Berbeco, M.; Rosenau, J.; Branch, Glenn. "Climate education in the classroom: cloudy with a chance of confusion". Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Retrieved 24 January 2018. 
  3. ^ "Rudolph and Ina Carnap Prize Essayists - UCLA Department of Philosophy". UCLA Department of Philosophy. Retrieved 22 January 2018. 
  4. ^ "Yost Prize For Excellence In Teaching - UCLA Department of Philosophy". UCLA Department of Philosophy. Retrieved 22 January 2018. 
  5. ^ "Staff". NCSE. Retrieved 22 January 2018. 
  6. ^ "Evolution: Education and Outreach". Evolution: Education and Outreach. 
  7. ^ "Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society | SAGE Publications Inc". Retrieved 27 January 2018. 
  8. ^ Jason, Rosenhouse,; Glenn, Branch, (1 March 2006). "Media Coverage of "Intelligent Design"". BioScience. 56 (3). doi:10.1641/0006-3568(2006)056[0247:MCOID]2.0.CO;2. ISSN 0006-3568. 
  9. ^ Glenn, Branch; Forrest, Barbara (Jan–Feb 2005). "Wedging Creationism into the Academy". Academe. 91 (91): 36–41. ISSN 0190-2946. Retrieved 27 January 2018. 
  10. ^ Branch, Glenn; Scott, Eugenie C.; Rosenau, Joshua (2010). "Dispatches from the evolution wars: shifting tactics and expanding battlefields". Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics. pp. 317–338. doi:10.1146/annurev-genom-082509-141815. PMID 20504219. 
  11. ^ "New Florida Law Lets Residents Challenge School Textbooks". 
  12. ^ "Analysis of the Discovery Institute's Bibliography". NCSE. 26 February 2016. 
  13. ^ "NCSE at Work: A New Mexico Story". NCSE. Retrieved 24 January 2018. 
  14. ^ Branch, Glenn (13 March 2017). "Science teachers in the trenches of the climate wars". Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Retrieved 24 January 2018. 
  15. ^ Reid, Ann; Branch, Glenn. "50 Years Ago: Repeal of Tennessee's "Monkey Law"". Scientific American Blog Network. SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN. Retrieved 24 January 2018.