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Using Concept Mapping to Foster Adaptive Expertise

Enhancing Teacher Metacognitive Learning to Improve Student Academic Performance


Diane Salmon and Melissa Kelly

Concept mapping is a powerful means to promote metacognitive learning in students and teachers alike. When teachers integrate concept mapping into their instructional planning, they clarify the big ideas, expose new conceptual relationships, and refine learning goals for their students. Salmon and Kelly provide a research-based framework and corresponding strategies to help teachers develop, critique, and revise their concept maps. In using this approach, teachers refine knowledge for teaching in order to expand their adaptive expertise and ultimately improve the academic performances of their students. Teacher candidates at both the undergraduate and graduate level can use this book to support their professional learning and planning for teaching. Teacher educators will find this text appropriate for courses that address learning, cognition, and instructional planning. In-service professionals can use the approach described here to support their own professional development through their practice. Administrators and coaches will find the volume a useful tool in fostering a professional learning community in their schools.
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Chapter 7. Creating Conceptual Coherence

Strengthening Coherence in Concept Maps Through Crosslinks


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The coherence of a concept map refers to the integration of the conceptual structures. This integration can be achieved in two major ways: crosslinks and cycle structures. When teachers increase the coherence of their concept maps in instructional planning, they can strengthen the connections between their planning and their students’ learning. ← 135 | 136 →

When we examined concept structures in chapter 6, we focused on progressive differentiation and examined how spoke, chain, and network structures provide metacognitive feedback about how well the concepts within a map are differentiated. In this chapter, we explain how a complementary process known as integrative reconciliation adds to the power of concept mapping as a learning tool. This process also coincides with the fifth practice in constructing a concept map for instructional planning (refer to Figure II.1). Procedurally this step is an extension of the previous practice in that it often entails the refinement and reorganization of the conceptual structures in the concept map. Conceptually this step is a process of creating coherence among the conceptual structures. It helps contribute to deeper understandings of how the connected sets of ideas interrelate with one another, which is an important aspect of instructional planning (Danielson, 2007).

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