The Structure of Cognitive Maps: Representations and Processes

Stephen C. Hirtle, P. Bryan Heidorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


This chapter discusses the representations and processes in the Structure of Cognitive Maps. Compared to research on map study and on computational models, language use of spatial terms is more dynamic and the spatial representations for linguistic use are more dependent on characteristics such as the point of view. The linguistic mechanisms that people use to describe their environment provide insight into the internal mechanisms people use for spatial memory and processing. People select reference objects and reference frames to localize other objects in space. The specification of spatial relations and objects are idealized. Objects become point-like and plane-like. In addition, the three general problems discussed in the chapter are (1) describing the internal representation of space as acquired from physical representations that are also spatial in nature, such as maps, (2) describing the representations inherent in computational models of space, and (3) describing the interaction with linguistic representations. The chapter concludes with a discussion of implications of this research for future geographic information services and uses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-192
Number of pages23
JournalAdvances in Psychology
Issue numberC
StatePublished - Jan 1 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'The Structure of Cognitive Maps: Representations and Processes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this