Practical Ontology: Collaborating and Communicating with Concept Maps

How-to Session
Seema Rao, Brilliant Idea Studio, USA, Patty Edmonson, Cleveland Museum of Art, USA, Brad Baer, Bluecadet, USA, Ashley Weinard, Eduseum Consulting, USA

Published paper: Practical ontology: Collaborating and communicating with concept maps

Concept mapping is a technique rooted in the constructivist theory that learning is an active process that happens through the interaction of experience and new ideas. In the how-to session associated with this paper, attendees learn how to create concept maps as a tool for effective communication in museums both internally and with visitors. Presenters share three examples of how they used concept mapping in the development of digital projects, collaboratively create a concept map to demonstrate process and benefit, and lead a concept mapping session.

Objectives of the session include that participants learn how to create and facilitate a collective concept-mapping experience. Participants reflect collectively on the value and application of concept mapping as a way to see a familiar idea “sideways,” from new perspectives and depths; visualize thinking; identify common ground across collaborators; and collect, organize, and share ideas. Participants also brainstorm and explore possible internal/external applications.

Falk, J. H., T. Moussouri, and D. Coulson. “The Effect of Visitors’ Agendas on Museum Learning.” Curator: The Museum Journal 41:2 (1998): 107 - 120.'s%20Agendas.pdf

Maldonado, Roberto Martinez, Judy Kay, and Kalina Yacef. “Analysing Knowledge Generation and Acquisition from Individual and Face-to-Face Collaborative Concept Mapping.” From Concept Maps: Theory, Methodology, Technology. Proc. of the Fifth Int. Conference on Concept Mapping, Valletta, Malta 2012.

Novak, J. D. & A. J. Cañas. “The Theory Underlying Concept Maps and How to Construct Them, Technical Report IHMC CmapTools 2006-01 Rev 01-2008.” Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition, 2008.