Main Article Content


For more than half a century, my students and I have sought to understand why some learners acquire a deep, meaningful understanding of materials studied, whereas others have only a superficial grasp of the information presented. Often the latter kind of student had high school grades and high standardized test scores. What appeared to underlie the differences in these two groups of students was the differences in the way they approached learning of subject matter. Unfortunately, as a graduate student at the University of Minnesota in the 1950’s, the only learning psychology taught was behavioral psychology, and this largely sought to remove meaning from learning experiments, either by using animals, nonsense syllables, paired-word associations, or other material that would not “contaminate” experiments due to the almost idiosyncratic nature of leaner’s meanings of concepts or ideas. I thought then that behavioral psychology had essentially no relevance to human learning of the kind I was interested in. Fortunately for our research group, Ausubel’s assimilation theory of meaningful learning was published in 1963, and this provided a solid theoretical foundation for the work we were interested in doing.

Article Details

How to Cite
Novak, J. D. (2010). Learning, Creating, and Using Knowledge: Concept maps as facilitative tools in schools and corporations. Journal of E-Learning and Knowledge Society, 6(3).