This meta-analysis, which looks at studies including almost 12,000 students, concludes that creating concept maps does indeed promote learning.
Specifically, it’s better than simply looking at concept maps, or listening to lectures, or participating in discussions, or even writing summaries.
The article summarizes several hypotheses to explain the benefits of concept mapping: it reduces working memory load by using both visual and verbal channels, it requires greater cognitive elaboration, and so forth.
So, let’s hear it: how do you get your students to map concepts? What successes have you had? Let me know in the comments…
(h/t IQ’s Corner)