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ERIC Number: EJ910741
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 43
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 56
ISSN: ISSN-0737-0008
Spatial Foundations of Science Education: The Illustrative Case of Instruction on Introductory Geological Concepts
Liben, Lynn S.; Kastens, Kim A.; Christensen, Adam E.
Cognition and Instruction, v29 n1 p45-87 2011
To study the role of spatial concepts in science learning, 125 college students with high, medium, or low scores on a horizontality (water-level) spatial task were given information about geological strike and dip using existing educational materials. Participants mapped an outcrop's strike and dip, a rod's orientation, pointed to a distant building and north, and completed 3-dimensional horizontality and verticality tasks. Many students, particularly those with low water-level scores, experienced difficulty on both field and laboratory tasks and failed to use good field-observation strategies. Error patterns implicated roles of cognitive regularization of the environment, embodied spatial cognition, and map experience. Data relating performance to participants' spatial skills, gender, self-reported confidence in responses, spatial awareness, and strategy use suggest a range of instructional approaches. (Contains 3 tables, 5 footnotes and 14 figures.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A