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Novak, J.D. & Can~as, A.J.  (2008).  The Theory Underlying Concept Maps and How to Construct and use them.  Technical Report IHMC Cmap Tools 2006-01 Rev 01-2008.

This article is one of the most commonly cited explanations for addressing the question "What is a concept map?".  It provides information on the components of a map (concepts, cross links, and examples) and step-by-step guidelines (1 - brainstorming, 2 -organizing, 3 - layout, 4 - linking, 5 - revising, 6 - gallery walk) that would be useful for explaining how to concept map to novices.  It also describes the learning theory behind concept mapping - placing ideas in the context of pre-existing knowledge and being able to identify general conceps and relate them to more specific concepts.  Novak suggests that instructing students in concept mapping should include information on learning and knowledge organization.  He highlights the potential use of concept maps as cooperative learning tools and the potential use of concept maps for evaluation tools.  This article


Marée, Ton J., Jan M. van Bruggen, Wim M.G. Jochems.  Effective self-regulated science learning through multimedia-enriched skeleton concept maps.  Research in Science & Technological Education.   Vol. 31, Iss. 1, 2013

This study investigates the effect of multimedia-enriched skeleton concept maps and structured group interactions on deep learning and retention of material in an undergraduate "Biomolecules" course.  Some relevant information include details on how to frame group conversation as students work together to complete maps and the idea of having students start with a skeleton map instead of from scratch.  It is also a potential model for how to evaluate the effectiveness of using concept maps including having multiple "experts" preapre concept maps for comparison and using both the class exams and a retention test giving without notice. 

Surapaneni, K.M. & Tekian, A. (2013). Concept mapping enhances learning of biochemistry.  Medical Education Online, 18: 20157.

This study evaluated the effectiveness of using concept mapping in the context of case-studies in a first year medical education curricula.  They compared the combination of cases and concept mapping to a lecture-based program.  Students were evaluated by three content exams and also completed a questionnaire to evaluate the process.  They saw improved learning and enjoyment in the experimental group.  This study lacks depth that I hope to include in my research question and combined concept mapping with case based learning.  I will need to look at the original research the group did on just CBL to compare the effect of including concept maps had on students.

Bruillard, E. & Baron, G.  (2000).  Computer-based concept mapping a congitive tool for students:  a review. Proceedings of conference on educationl uses of information and communication technologies:  IFIP, 16th World computer congress 2000, Beijing, China, 21-25 August 2000.

A review of computer-based concept mapping.  I selected this article because there are so many free concept mapping tools available for computers and iPads/iPods personal devices, and I think there are advantages to using them.  Students can perform revision cycles easier and share concept maps electornically with me or other students.  This article highlights some of the problems with paper-based concept mapping (the need for and difficulties or frustrations students experience in the multiple revisions needed) and the advantages to using computer based concept mapping tools (easy restructuring, highlighting, comments, presentability, export, and a media that current students can relate to).  Computer based concept mapping tools is another potential variable to consider or incorporate in the student design (or just in the classroom).

Stewart, M. (3023).  Joined up thinking?  Evaluating the use of concept-mapping to develop complex system learning.  Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 37:3, 349-368.

This study evaluated the use of concept maps in an undergraduate geology course.  It answered two questions:  1 - Did the concept-mapping exercise enhance students learning? and 2 - Did student perceive the concept-mapping exercise to be useful to their learning?  To evaluate 1, the researchers used a framework called the Structure of the Observed Learning Outcomes (SOLO) developed by Biggs and Collis to measure the complexity of students' thinking.  This structure was the foundation for the evaluation of student concept maps and may be a way to organize a rubric for evaluating concept maps in the research I propose.  The group also provides the two questions they asked students to evaluate their second question.  They commented that students used concept mapping after this research as a review tool.  It may be interesting to look into if concept mapping affects student learning in other classes.

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