A computer-supported method to reveal and assess Personal Professional Theories in vocational education

Antoine C.M. van den Bogaart, Richel J.C. Bilderbeek, Harmen Schaap, Hans Hummel, Paul A. Kirschner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

15 Downloads (Pure)


This article introduces a dedicated, computer supported method to construct and formatively assess concept maps of Personal Professional Theories: internalized bodies of knowledge (i.e. mental models) that professionals use as reference to interpret and acquire knowledge and to direct their behaviour and which vocational students are expected to develop. However, the development of essentially mental models is difficult to monitor and assess. Traditional elicitation and assessment methods such as semi-structured interviews and concept mapping, are either too labour intensive to be applied in education or do not reveal the quality of the student’s mental models. The article presents a new method which has been shown to be valid, reliable and easy usable in education, and which reveals the quality in a way comparable to and in many cases better than the traditional methods.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)613-629
Number of pages17
JournalTechnology, Pedagogy & Education
Issue number5
Early online date27 Jan 2016
Publication statusPublished - 2016



  • professional knowledge
  • personal professional theories
  • vocational education
  • concept maps
  • assessment
  • learning technology

Cite this