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Book Chapter

Training Spatial Skills in Geosciences: A Review of Tests and Tools

By
Kristin M. Gagnier
Kristin M. Gagnier
Science of Learning Institute, Johns Hopkins University, 3400 N. Charles St., Baltimore, Maryland 21218, U.S.A. (e-mail: kristin.gagnier@jhu.edu)
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Thomas F. Shipley
Thomas F. Shipley
Department of Psychology, Temple University, 1701 N. 13th St., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19122, U.S.A. (e-mail: tshipley@temple.edu)
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Basil Tikoff
Basil Tikoff
Department of Geoscience, University of Wisconsin Madison, 1215 W. Dayton St., Madison, Wisconsin 53706, U.S.A. (e-mails: basil@geology.wisc.edu, bridget@wisc.edu)
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Bridget C. Garnier
Bridget C. Garnier
Department of Geoscience, University of Wisconsin Madison, 1215 W. Dayton St., Madison, Wisconsin 53706, U.S.A. (e-mails: basil@geology.wisc.edu, bridget@wisc.edu)
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Carol Ormand
Carol Ormand
Science Education Resource Center, Carleton College, One North College St., Northfield, Minnesota 55057, U.S.A. (e-mail: cormand@carleton.edu)
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Kinnari Atit
Kinnari Atit
Department of Psychology, Northwestern University, 2029 Sheridan Rd., Evanston, Illinois 60208, U.S.A. (e-mail: kinnari.atit@northwestern.edu)
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Ilyse Resnick
Ilyse Resnick
School of Education, University of Delaware, 16 W. Main St., Newark, Delaware 19716, U.S.A. (e-mail: iresnick@udel.edu)
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Published:
January 01, 2016

Abstract

Characterizing spatial thinking and the development of spatial expertise is essential to understanding how to train geoscientists to succeed in both academia and industry. The Spatial Intelligence and Learning Center has supported an eight-year-long collaborative research program, which brings together disciplinary expertise in cognitive science and geology to characterize and develop spatial thinking in the geological sciences. To facilitate our understanding of science education and practice, we have characterized the spatial skills of geoscience discipline experts and the spatial thinking impediments experienced by students studying the geological sciences. In this chapter we review recent research on measuring and improving spatial thinking skills in the geosciences and on characterizing individual differences in spatial thinking, including the role of gender and age. We conclude with a discussion of important unanswered questions and some directions for future research. The research discussed here may help guide the development of best practices for spatial thinking training in both academic and industry settings.

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Contents

AAPG Memoir

3-D Structural Interpretation: Earth, Mind, and Machine

Bob Krantz
Bob Krantz
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Carol Ormand
Carol Ormand
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Brett Freeman
Brett Freeman
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American Association of Petroleum Geologists
Volume
111
ISBN electronic:
9781629812779
Publication date:
January 01, 2016

References

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