Gestures in geology: The roles of spatial skills, expertise, and communicative context

Lynn S. Liben, Adam E. Christensen, Kim A. Kastens

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

15 Scopus citations


Spatial thinking is an essential part of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), domains that entail external spatial representations such as 2D graphics, 3D models, and-the focus here-gestures. University students (a) read aloud information about the geological concepts of strike and dip, (b) completed strike and dip tasks, and (c) explained these concepts to another student via audio and video. Gestural patterns varied across reading, audio, and video contexts in interaction with participant variables of spatial skill and prior geology coursework. Only novices gestured during reading, interpreted as novices' attempts to aid their own conceptual understanding of new information. All participant groups produced different gestural patterns in audio versus video contexts, suggesting the communicative intent of many gestures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSpatial Cognition VII - International Conference Spatial Cognition 2010, Proceedings
Number of pages17
StatePublished - 2010
EventInternational Conference Spatial Cognition 2010 - Mt. Hood/Portland, OR, United States
Duration: Aug 15 2010Aug 19 2010

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume6222 LNAI
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


OtherInternational Conference Spatial Cognition 2010
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityMt. Hood/Portland, OR

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science


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