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ERIC Number: EJ834620
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Mar
Pages: 4
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 29
ISSN: ISSN-0031-9120
City of Physics--Analogies to Increase Cognitive Coherence in Physics Learning
Tabor-Morris, A. E.; Froriep, K. A.; Briles, T. M.; McGuire, C. M.
Physics Education, v44 n2 p195-198 Mar 2009
Physics educators and researchers can be concerned with how students attain cognitive coherence: specifically, how students understand and intra-connect the whole of their knowledge of the "field of physics". Starting instead with the metaphor "city of physics", the implication of applying architectural concepts for the human acquisition of mental maps of physics subject material is considered. The seminal urban planning research by the architectural urban planner Lynch identified five elements of imageability that assist in forming the image of a city in a person's mind: "landmarks, nodes, paths, edges, and districts". These elements are applied to physics learning as an analogy and as a tangible theoretical framework to increase cognitive coherence in students' physics learning and encourage students not to rely on "route-knowledge" (step-by-step instructions) but to seek "survey-knowledge" (including creating a mental map) as defined here, so as to aid in navigational recall and wayfinding. We suggest that teacher awareness and utilization of these elements can assist inherent student learning strategies. (Contains 1 table.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A