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Schemas

  • By: Charles H. Elliott & Tam Chandler
  • In: Encyclopedia of Educational Psychology
  • Edited by: Neil J. Salkind
  • Subject:School/Educational Psychology (general), Educational Psychology, School Psychology

Although no universally agreed-upon definition of schemas exists, schemas are generally considered to be well-learned cognitive patterns of domain-specific information that are used as templates by individuals to help them explain, interpret, perceive, encode, and respond to complex tasks and experiences. Schemas also allow for predictions about what to expect in future situations relevant to the particular schema. They create meaning from situations, data, and events by organizing and determining the patterns in complex sets of information. Schemas actually have a reciprocal relationship with data in that schemas may modify the meaning of information, but information or data may also lead to modifications in schemas. Both educators and counselors have interest in schemas because schemas help them understand how both informational and emotional learning ...

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