ERIC Number: EJ1060775
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 56
Applying Conceptual Blending to Model Coordinated Use of Multiple Ontological Metaphors
Dreyfus, Benjamin W.; Gupta, Ayush; Redish, Edward F.
International Journal of Science Education, v37 n5-6 p812-838 2015
Energy is an abstract science concept, so the ways that we think and talk about energy rely heavily on ontological metaphors: metaphors for what kind of thing energy is. Two commonly used ontological metaphors for energy are "energy as a substance" and "energy as a vertical location." Our previous work has demonstrated that students and experts can productively use both the substance and location ontologies for energy. In this paper, we use Fauconnier and Turner's conceptual blending framework to demonstrate that experts and novices can successfully blend the substance and location ontologies into a coherent mental model in order to reason about energy. Our data come from classroom recordings of a physics professor teaching a physics course for the life sciences, and from an interview with an undergraduate student in that course. We analyze these data using predicate analysis and gesture analysis, looking at verbal utterances, gestures, and the interaction between them. This analysis yields evidence that the speakers are blending the substance and location ontologies into a single blended mental space.
Descriptors: Figurative Language, Science Instruction, Scientific Concepts, Energy, Guidelines, Specialists, Novices, Models, Physics, College Faculty, Language Usage, Undergraduate Students, Discourse Analysis, Nonverbal Communication, Verbal Communication, Correlation, Semi Structured Interviews
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Authoring Institution: N/A
IES Grant or Contract Numbers: DGE 07-50616|DUE 11-22818