Universidade de São Paulo (USP), Brasil: Research Group on Concept Mapping

The “Grupo de Pesquisa Mapas Conceituais” at the Universidade de São Paulo, Brasil, lead by Prof. Paulo Correia, focuses on understanding how concept maps can foster meaningful learning and collaborative processes. They are investigating Cognitive Load Theory as a means to better understand critical aspects that need to be overcome implementation obstacles found when Cmaps are used in everyday classrooms. Ongoing projects focus on Cmaps made by students and teachers.

  • Cmaps made by students: Most students are novices at both concept mapping and on the taught subject. The research group has developed training activities to help students produce good Cmaps, i.e., representative external representation of their internal mental models. Student-centered activities involving Cmaps can easily place students under cognitive overload.
  • Cmaps made by teachers: Being experts on the taught subject, teachers need to gain experience on concept mapping. They can prepare expert Cmaps to be used in classroom before the instruction (e.g., advance organizers), during the instruction (e.g., to set up learning activities) and after the instruction (e.g., to evaluate students’ conceptual understanding). The research group is investigating which are the most suitable structural and semantic features of these Cmaps to foster cognitive processes related to learning.

For more information, visit:  http://www.mapasconceituais.com.br