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To help students learn, instructors use visual representations, such as pie charts and number lines of fractions, or Lewis structures and space-filling models of molecules:
Visuals can help students learn; but they can also be confusing if students do not know how they show information. Therefore, students need representational competencies: knowledge and skills that enable them to construct, interpret visual representations, and to make connections between them. Our research investigates (1) which representational competencies are key to STEM learning, (2) through which processes students acquire them, and (3) best to support them in instruction.
Current research projects focus on the conceptual, perceptual, and social factors of learning with visuals.
To learn more about our empirical research, take a look at recent publications.