The Role of Geographical Investigations In Developing Students’ Cognitive Thinking, pp. 10 of 11


All in all, this study has affirmed the importance of fieldwork in contributing to students’ cognitive development. More importantly, it has provided a deeper understanding of Geography fieldwork and its effects on cognition by investigating the role of GI (an inquiry-driven fieldwork) on students’ cognitive thinking. Through the construction of an analytical framework to compare students’ cognitive abilities before and after GI, a more in-depth understanding of the complexities of students’ cognitive development was attained.  Furthermore, this study contributes to the nascent academic literature on how Geography fieldwork influences students’ cognitive thinking, especially in relation to GI in Singapore: In this study, all students experienced a marked improvement in higher-order cognitive thinking skills after their Transport GI. More specifically, they developed higher-order cognitive thinking skills in analysis, and showed deeper thinking in higher-order cognitive levels of evaluation and creation. These cognitive skills are essential in helping students make sense of new knowledge- one of the main learning outcomes of Geography, thereby contributing to the honing of 21st Century Competencies specifically critical and inventive thinking. These experiences help shape students to become confident, self-directed learners and active contributors of the future, ultimately fulfilling the DOE of Singapore’s education system.

This research was undertaken as an Undergraduate Research on Campus project at NTU. Supervised by A/P Kim Irvine & Dr. Tricia Seow.

An Inspiring Quote

"[Open-mindedness] includes an active desire to listen to more sides than one; to give heed to facts from whatever source they come; to give full attention to alternative possibilities; to recognize the possibility of error even in the beliefs that are dearest to us."

~ John Dewey, How We Think

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