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Intentional Conceptual Change.

INTENTIONAL CONCEPTUAL CHANGE. G. M. Sinatra & P. R. Pintrich (Eds.). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 2003. 479pp. $99.95. Can educators affect the knowledge base and structure of another learner beyond that person's motivation to learn? This powerful and essential question is the fundamental basis of Sinatra and Pintrich's persuasive book on intentional conceptual change. Their approach to the question covers many epistemological grounds, including metacognition, self-analysis, domain-specificity, socio-culture, and motivation. The delineation of each of these topics richly encompasses both research and theory, with ideas postulated for continuing research in this field.

This tripartite volume begins with an exploration of cognition, metacognition, and conceptual change. The authors discuss (with many examples) mental phenomena, such as mind-to-world fit and the inverse, world-to-mind fit, to clarify our intentional reception of knowledge as well as our intentional accommodation of sociocultural knowledge. Part II of the book deals with epistemological and social belief systems, and presents case studies and domain-specific delineation of belief changes, together with discussions about structuring instruction to facilitate the appropriate conceptual change. Part III places these discussions within a socio-cultural framework and provides directions for future research.

The volume is purposefully intense, with deliberations that call on the readers to examine their own styles of learning and knowledge acquisition. It also focuses our attention on our roles as teachers and questions our assumptions about basic conceptual changes in students' minds. This book is a highly recommended read for all scholars in the field, particularly researchers interested in cognition, learning, and knowledge structures. Reviewed by Sudha Swaminathan, Associate Professor, Eastern Connecticut State University, Willimantic, CT
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Author:Swaminathan, Sudha
Publication:Childhood Education
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Mar 22, 2005
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