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Quelle place pour les apprentissages spatiaux à l’école ? Etude expérimentale du développement des compétences spatiales des élèves âgés de 6 à 15 ans

Abstract : How do children and adolescents grap a space? What are the parameters that make a situation more complex than others? What are the strategies employed to reproduce an itinerary or navigate in a particular space? This thesis aims to provide answers to these questions. Located halfway between Educational Science and Cognitive Psychology, this thesis is made up of three parts. The first part focuses on the analysis of the prescribed curriculum (Core Skills, study programmes). This analysis reports internal and external inconsistencies and gaps. If space can be discussed in many disciplines (mathematics and geography, for example), the implementation of specific activities relates almost exclusively to pre-primary and primary education and the importance of space knowledge acquisition for secondary education decreases over the years until becoming insignificant, despite a limited mastery by learners, especially in geometry. The second part of the thesis focuses on the analysis of curriculum through external evaluations, such as national external evaluations (without certification) and the Programme for International Student Assessment (as PISA). In this part, we question what is actually acquired by learners during primary and secondary education. The analysis identifies the hardest-won spatial mechanisms by learners (visualization in space, for example). This will allows questioning the knowledge that is actually assessed through these assessments (disciplinary knowledge versus spatial knowledge) and highlight the lack of importance granted to space knowledge in the external evaluations in French-speaking Community of Belgium. The third part of the thesis continues the analysis through a series of experiments conducted in a developmental perspective, and that are based on wealthier situations (3D environments, real or virtual, for example). Spatial cognitive mechanisms allowing children and adolescents to grasp a space are studied depending on the curriculum requirements, external assessments and observations in school contexts. The main results allow to identifying the parameters of spatial navigation tasks that increase its complexity. The specific interest about identifying cognitive strategies involved in complex tasks in space navigation highlights the impact of the environment structure on spatial strategies. If they have an intrinsic interest to understand the fundamental mechanisms mobilized in exercises requiring the implementation of spatial skills in young people aged 6 to 15 years, these results also inform curriculum developers and teachers about some important steps to mobilize in the school contexts.
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Contributor : Natacha Duroisin <>
Submitted on : Saturday, May 16, 2015 - 5:02:45 PM
Last modification on : Monday, October 19, 2020 - 11:03:55 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Thursday, April 20, 2017 - 12:31:19 AM


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  • HAL Id : tel-01152392, version 1



Natacha Duroisin. Quelle place pour les apprentissages spatiaux à l’école ? Etude expérimentale du développement des compétences spatiales des élèves âgés de 6 à 15 ans. Education. Université de Mons, 2015. Français. ⟨tel-01152392⟩



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