Children more familiar with Zuckerberg than Einstein

Children are more likely to recognise Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg than Albert Einstein, a survey has discovered.

Only 45 per cent of children aged five to 16 were able to identify the man who discovered the theory of relativity, compared to the 68 per cent who correctly labelled the American billionaire. A recent report showed 44 per cent of British children aged eight to 12 use Facebook, despite an age limit of 13 on the social network site.

In further evidence of ignorance of basic scientific history, almost a quarter of eight-year-olds mistook Stephen Hawking for a hairdresser.

Some 63 per cent of all those surveyed were unable to identify Charles Darwin, and 62 per cent erred when asked to name Thomas Edison. One in five were able to name TV physicist Brian Cox. When the survey's results are multiplied on a national scale, it shows that 1 million children believe that the rapper Professor Green is in fact a scientist.

Earlier this month, Haier spoke to 1,000 children to compile its report. A spokesman said: "It is eye opening to discover that children of today are more aware of popular figures like Mark Zuckerberg than men and women who have made iconic discoveries and inventions that have revolutionised the modern world."

Eight in 100 children think Charles Darwin was a reality TV star, while a quarter of eight-year-olds think David Cameron invented the television.