The Development of Paranormal Belief Scale (PBS) for Science Education in the Context of Turkey

Mehmet Sen, Ezgi Yesilyurt
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Present study aims to translate and develop Paranormal Belief Questions (Rice, 2003) measuring studentsâ non-scientific beliefs which threat science education. Original version of these questions was asked in Southern Focus Poll (1998). 17 questions about paranormal beliefs were administered to 114 university students from different departments. After translating and developing Paranormal Belief Questions into Turkish, factor analysis was conducted and paranormal beliefs were limited in two dimensions as classical paranormal beliefs and religious paranormal beliefs as parallel with original form. Déjà vu item that is not consistent with other paranormal beliefs was removed depending on the factor analysis. The results of the current study enable to differentiate scientific beliefs from non-scientific beliefs of students. By this way, science educators can benefit from this scale.


Science education, Non-scientific beliefs, Paranormal beliefs, Paranormal experience

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Appendix A: The Original Form of Paranormal Questions (Rice, 2003)

Paranormal Belief Questions Do you believe that after people die, souls go to Heaven and Hell? Believe Don’t Believe Not Sure Do you believe that people are sometimes possessed by the Jinn? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Do you believe that God answers prayers? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Which one of these statements comes closest to your belief about God: God Spirit or Life Force Neither Which do you think is a more likely explanation for the origin of human life on Earth? Creationism Evolution Both Neither Do you believe in life after death? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Have you personally ever experienced having an illness cured by prayer? Yes No Not Sure Do you believe in astrology, that Is, that the positions of the stars and planets can affect people's lives? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Do you believe in ESP, that is extra sensory perception? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Do you believe that extraterrestrial beings have visited Earth at some time in the past? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Do you believe in ghosts, that is, that spirits of dead people can came back in certain places and situations? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Do you believe in psychic or spiritual healing, that is, the power of the human mind to heal the human body? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Do you believe in reincarnation, that is, the rebirth of the soul in a new body after death? Believe Don’ t Believe Not Sure Do you believe in déjà vu, that is, the feeling that you have been somewhere or done something before? Believe Don’t Believe Not Sure In your opinion, are UFOs something real, or just people's imagination? Real Imagined Depends Not Sure How superstitious are you? Very Somewhat Not at all Have you personally ever used the power of your mind to heal your own body? Yes No Not Sure .

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