The Theory Underlying Concept Maps and How to Construct and Use Them
Concept maps are graphical tools for organizing and representing knowledge. They include concepts, usually enclosed in circles or boxes of some type, and relationships between concepts indicated by a connecting line linking two concepts. Words on the line, referred to as linking words or linking phrases, specify the relationship between the two concepts. We define concept as a perceived regularity in events or objects, or records of events or objects, designated by a label. The label for most concepts is a word, although sometimes we use symbols such as + or %, and sometimes more than one word is used. Propositions are statements about some object or event in the universe, either naturally occurring or constructed. Figure 1. (click on an image for a larger view) Another important characteristic of concept maps is the inclusion of cross-links. A final feature that may be added to concept maps is specific examples of events or objects that help to clarify the meaning of a given concept.