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This article presents 3 studies that examine how students and experts employ mental rotation and a learned heuristic to solve chemistry tasks that involve spatial information. Results from Study 1 indicate that despite instruction in analytical strategies, students choose to employ mental rotation on canonical assessment tasks. In Study 2, experts were(More)
Spatial thinking is a vital component of the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics curriculum. However, to date, broad development of learning environments that target domain-specific spatial thinking is incomplete. The present article visits the problem of improving spatial thinking by first reviewing the evidence that the human mind is(More)
  • Mike Stieff
  • AAAI Spring Symposium: Reasoning with Mental and…
  • 2005
Mental visualization of diagrammatic representations is presumed to be a critical strategy for learning and problem solving, particularly in the sciences. However, little is known about how students employ visualization on genuine scientific tasks. The present study describes undergraduate chemistry students’ use of visualization for problem solving using(More)
Computer-based visualizations play a profoundly important role in chemistry instruction. In this chapter, we review the role of visualization tools and possible ways in which they may influence thinking about chemistry. There are now several visualization systems available that allow students to manipulate important variables in obtain a solution to a(More)