Analysis and Assessment of Visuals in Textbooks with a Geographical Content

Journal / Conference: IGU Regional Conference and Annual Meeting of the CAG (Québec, 6.–10. 8. 2018)
Authors: Jan D. Bláha, Petr Knecht, Petr Trahorsch
Year: 2018
Category of Publication: Contribution in Conference Proceedings
Pages, web: pouze abstrakt / only abstract
Keywords: visuals, geography textbook, homeland study textbook, textbook with geographical content
Link to full version:
Abstract: Geographical didactic aids traditionally contain a large number of visuals. Unfortunately, authors of didactic aids are not able to ensure adequate usability of visuals sometimes. The evident example is simple illustrative function that prevails over the didactic one. The other problems could be named that many visuals are inadequate relating to pupilsʼ age, they are not well-considered and thus the undesirable formation of misconceptions is encouraged. The object of presented expert analysis are the visuals in sixteen Czech textbooks with a geographical content. The analysis was provided by multi-criteria assessment. The scaling method was used according to predefined criteria, considering of the weights previously proposed by experts (pair comparison method). Beside the general assessment of visuals, the specific comparison of selected examples of maps, photographs, schemes and graphs was conducted. The conclusions of the general assessment of the visuals could be sum up as: (1) an increasing number of abstract visuals with the expected age of pupils, (2) a high number of photographs with only illustrative function, (3) a low share of schemes supporting the development of pupilʼs abstract thinking, (4) a high share of visuals in regional-geographical curriculum, (5) a high number of visuals without any label. Whereas the adequacy of visuals in relation to pupilʼs age was not find problematic, the connections of the visuals to text and the legibility issue seem to be relatively low.
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