Graduate studies at Western
|Abstract||Concepts are mental representations corresponding to words. For example, the concept `dog` is a mental structure that corresponds to the word `dog' and refers to dogs in the world. Conceptual change is produced by mental processes that create and alter such mental representations. Explaining how conceptual change works is important for understanding the growth of scientific knowledge, the development of children's thinking, and the education of students in fields such as science and mathematics. In each of these kinds of learning, a theory of conceptual change is needed that can answer such questions as the following. What is the nature of the concepts that are learned? What kinds of changes do concepts undergo? What are the mental processes that produce different kinds of conceptual change? It is also interesting to inquire whether the processes of conceptual change in scientists, <span class='Hi'>young</span> children, and students are similar or different.|
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