Profile
David Uttal

David H. Uttal

Professor , Psychology
Professor , Education

Swift Hall
Room 102
2029 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208-2705
Phone: (847) 467-1925
Fax: (847) 491-7859
Websites
Department of Psychology webpage
Awards/Honors
2008 - Associate Editor, Merrill-Palmer Quarterly

2008 - • Member, Standing Grant Review Panel, Mathematics and Science, Institute for Education Sciences, U. S. Department of Education

2007 - Member of the Math and Science Education grant review panel of the Institute of Educational Sciences of the U.S. Department of Education

2007 - Advisory board, Assembly of curriculum materials for a general-education course in spatial thinking, tying in spatial analysis and geography

Research/Scholarship

Education
Year Degree Institution
1989 PhD University of Michigan


Selected Publications
Jant, Erin; Haden, Catherine; Uttal, David; Babcock, Elizabeth (2014). Conversation and object manipulation influence children's learning in a museum. Child Development.

Jee, Benjamin; Gentner, Dedre; Uttal, David; Sageman, Bradley; Forbus, Kenneth; Manduca, Cathryn; Ormand, Carol; Shipley, Thomas; Tikoff, Basil (2014). Drawing on Experience: How Domain Knowledge Is Reflected in Sketches of Scientific Structures and Processes. Research in Science Education.

Jee, Benjamin; Uttal, David; Gentner, Dedre; Manduca, Cathy; Shipley, Thomas; Sageman, Bradley (2013). Finding faults: Analogical comparison supports spatial concept learning in geoscience. Cognitive Processing; 14(2): 175-187.

Uttal, David; Miller, David; Newcombe, Nora (2013). Exploring and Enhancing Spatial Thinking: Links to Achievement in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics?. Current Directions in Psychological Science; 22(5): 367-373.

Uttal, David; Meadow, Nathaniel; Tipton, Elizabeth; Hand, Linda; Alden, Alison; Warren, Christopher; Newcombe, Nora (2013). The malleability of spatial skills: A meta-analysis of training studies. Psychological Bulletin; 139(2): 352-402.

Selected Presentations
Jee, B. D., Uttal, D. H., & Gentner, D. (2008). To find fault is easy? The role of comparison in learning a geological structure. . Presented at the annual meetings of the Cognitive Science Society
. Washington D.C., DC.

Sauter, M., & Uttal, D. H. (2008). Pointing our the role of gesture in spatial development. . Presented at the annual meetings of the Cognitive Science Society
. Wahington D.C., DC.

Jee. B. D., Uttal, D. H., Gentner, D., Sageman, B., Manduca, C., Shipley, T., & Ormand, C. (2008). Comparisons rock: Using comparison to facilitate perceptual learning of a geoscience concept. Presented at the annual meetings of the Association for Psychological Science. Chicago, IL.

Hand, L. L, Uttal, D. H., Marulis, L., Newcombe, N. S. (2008). A Meta-analysis of training effects on spatial skills. Presented at the annual meetings of the Association for Psychological Science
. Chicago, IL.

Sauter, M., & Uttal, D. H. (2008). It’s in their hands: Gesturing influences children’s spatial thinking. . Presented at the annual meetings of the Association for Psychological Science
. Chicago, IL.

Ware, E. A., Deloache, J. S., & Uttal D. H (2006). Scale Errors Occur Outside of the Lab: Real-World Examples from Parents. Presented at the annual meetings of the Midwestern Psychological Association. Chicago, IL.

Schaal, A., Uttal, D. H., Levine, S., & Goldin-Meadow, S. (2006). Gesture’s Influence on the Integration of Spatial Information: Evidence from Children and Adults. Presented at the annual meetings of the Midwestern Psychological Association. Chicago, IL.

Marulis, L. M., Warren, C., Lewis, A., Newcombe, N., & Uttal, D.H. (2006). Effects of Training or Experience on Spatial Ability: A Meta-Analysis. Presented at the annual meetings of the Midwestern Psychological Association. Chicago, IL.

Schaal, A., Uttal, D. H., Meyer, A., Goldin-Meadow, S., & Levine, S. (2006). Words, Gestures, and Maps: Developmental Changes in the Integration of Spatial Information. Presented at the biennial meetings of the Conference on Human Development. Louisville, KY.

Uttal, D. H., DeLoache, J., Amaya, M., & Harmon, K. (2006). Concreteness and Symbolic Development: The Effects of Playing with Concrete Objects on Children’s Number and Letter Knowledge. Presented at the annual meetings of the American Education Research Association. San Francisco, CA.

Uttal, D. H., Amaya, M., Marulis, L., & DeLoache, J. (2006). When, How and Why Do Concrete Objects Facilitate Young Children’s Learning?. In D. Abramson (Chair) What’s a Situation in Situated Cognition? Presented at the biennial meetings of the International Conference of the Learning Sciences. Bloomington, IN.

Amaya, M., Bostwick, M., Uttal, D., & DeLoache, J (2005). Play and symbolic development: The effect of manipulatives on children’s early literacy skills.

Marulis, L., Warren, C., Uttal, D., & Newcombe, N (2005). The effects of training on spatial cognition in children: A meta analysis.

Uttal, D., & Newcombe, N. S (2005). One landmark, two spatial codes: The development of distance and relational coding. In T. L. Solomon & S. C. Levine (Chairs), Early development of relational coding: Abilities and Limitations.

Ware, E., Uttal, D., & DeLoache, J (2005). Scale errors occur outside of the lab: Real-world examples from parents.

Uttal. D. H (2005). Map use and the development of spatial cognition.

Matuk, C., & Uttal, D. H. Entertaining evolution: Understanding science from animations.. Presented at the biennial meetings of the International Society of the Learning Sciences
. The Netherlands.


Research Interests
Mental representation, cognitive development, spatial cognition, early symbolization.

Teaching/Advising


Courses
LOC 313 Learning & Thinking in Organizations This course examines learning, cognition, and decision-making in the context of organizational change. What factors influence indivdiuals’ and organizations’ use of information in making decisions? What biases do people bring to decisions and how do these affect the quality of their decisions? How can the organizational consultant influence how the organization uses data to make decisions? We focus particularly on good and bad examples of the relation between evidence collection, decision-making, and organizational change. Example organizations include hospitals, the airline industry, and the court system.


Service/Recognition


Professional Service
Year Organization Position Description
2008 Society for Research in Child Development Member
2008 Jean Piaget Society Program Committee Member
2008 Governing Council of the Midwestern Psychology Society Member
2007 Society for Research in Child Development Program Committee
2007 Society for Research in Child Development Panel Chair
2007 Midwestern Psychological Association Program Chair
2007 Midwestern Psychological Association Program Chair
2007 Midwestern Psychological Association Program Chair
2007 Jean Piaget Society Program Committee
2007 Cognitive Development Society Program Committee
2007 American Psychological Association Fellow
2007 American Psychological Association Treasurer
2007 American Education Research Association Program Committee
2006 Society for Research in Child Development Panel Chair, Program Committee
2006 NSF Curriculum Development Advisory Board Member I was asked to serve (and accepted) on the advisory board for an NSF proposal for the assembly of curriculum materials for a general-education course in spatial thinking, tying in spatial analysis and geography.
2006 Midwestern Psychological Association Program Chair I performed this service at the annual meeting.
2006 Institute of Educational Sciences of the U.S. Department of Education Standing Member of the Math and Science Education grant review panel
2006 American Psychological Association Fellow I served as Treasurer for my division of this organization through December, 2006.
2005 Institute of Educational Sciences of the U.S. Department of Education Standing member I was selected to serve as a standing member of the Math and Science Education grant review panel of the Institute of Educational Sciences of the U.S. Department of Education.


Editorial Boards
Year Journal Name Position
2006 Spatial Cognition and Computation Editor
2006 Psychological Science Reviewer
2006 Merril-Palmer Quarterly Editor
2006 Developmental Psychology Reviewer
2006 Cognitive Science Reviewer


Community Service
2008 - Present I serve as an occasional lecturer for local child care groups.
2007 - Present I occasionally conduct lectures and workshops for preschools and schools on early childhood education.
I gave a guest lecture at the teacher professional development monthly meeting at Kingsley Elementary School in Evanston.


Professional


Significant Works
2008 Summary statement of recent accomplishments and im
I had a good year. Several projects have come to fruition, and others are moving along as planned. I also began an interesting new line of research.

The first major accomplishment was the submission and publication of several journal articles and book chapters. The work focuses on children’s interpretation of the spatial features in symbols such as maps and photographs. In one paper (Uttal et al., Developmental Science), we demonstrated that children’s understanding of the relation between photographs and their referents in the world (i.e. what is shown in the photograph) continues to develop into the elementary school years. Most people would assume, we think, that photographs are transparent representations, but the developmental perspective suggests that they are not.

The second accomplishment was the funding of two grant proposals. One is a Training Grant from the Institute of Education Sciences. We focus on training graduate students from a variety of disciplines to conduct rigorous educational research. The second grant is for a project known as Omaha Science Media. In conjunction with the Omaha Public Schools and the University of Nebraska, I am studying ways to enhance student interest in science. Our focus is on teaching students and teachers to use radio production techniques to facilitate science communication. My role is head of research and evaluation of the project.

The third accomplishment was my participation in obtaining full finding for the Spatial Intelligence and Learning Center (SILC). This is a multi-university, interdisciplinary Center that studies spatial cognition and its role in education. The past year was a critical one, as we were evaluated successfully for full funding, which is over $5,000,00 per year (across several universities). We are not well positioned to make major advances in understanding the neural and psychological foundation of spatial cognition and its role in education.

During the coming year I plan to focus on publishing our work on visual representations of evolution. We are considering publishing this work in book form. I also will complete revisions on a meta-analysis of spatial analysis and the role of concrete and abstract representations in early learning of numbers of letters. Finally, I will apply for research funding for our work on map learning.







Last Updated: 2014-10-14 11:07:01