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A Research On the Relationship Between Problem-Solving Appraisal, Attention, and Visuospatial Skills of First-Year Architecture Students [Megaron]
Megaron. 2021; 16(2): 212-222 | DOI: 10.14744/megaron.2021.98623  

A Research On the Relationship Between Problem-Solving Appraisal, Attention, and Visuospatial Skills of First-Year Architecture Students

Aktan Acar1, Şebnem A. Soysal Acar2, Elif Ünver3
1TOBB University of Economics and Technology Department of Architecture
2Gazi University Faculty of Medicine Department of Pediatrics
3Graduate student

The first-year students in architectural education must deal with design exercises and studio processes that involve problems they have not encountered before. It is essential to understand the intellectual and cognitive personal resources students use to deal with the unique problems and issues of the first year. Attention and their appraisal of their own problem-solving skills can be presented as one of the primary personal resources. These resources should be considered in terms of student-centered and personalized, healthy, and sustainable learning. This dimension of learning is of great importance, especially in the emergency distance education process due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The objective of the study is to investigate the relationship between problem-solving appraisal, attention, and visuospatial skills of first-year architecture students. The research is an experimental study. Neuropsychological assessment tools and scales were used. There are Turkish standardization studies for these neuropsychological assessment tools. These tools have norm values on a healthy sample, which were benefited as control group scores. For visuospatial skills, Raven Standard Progressive Matrices test and Benton Judgment of Line Orientation test; for attention, STROOP test TBAG version were administrated. Problem-Solving Appraisal Inventory were given to record the students’ their own validation and assessment on their own problem-solving skills. Participants were volunteer first year architecture students, who complied with the inclusion criteria. The sample was composed of 40 (26, %65.0, female, 14, %35.0, male) students. Age range was 18-22. It was observed that the students participating in the study evaluated their own problem-solving skills positively. It was found that female participants evaluated their problem-solving skills as more advanced regarding to planfulness factor, whereas for male students it was the selfconfidence factor. The neuropsychological test performances of the participants who evaluate their own problem-solving skills negatively were lower. Findings suggest that participants whose problem-solving skills are incompatible with the age group need improvement in decision-making, action, part-whole relationship, visual motor speed, and resistance to confounders or distractors. It was concluded that students who evaluated themselves as better problem solvers in evaluative approach, self-confidence and planfulness dimensions performed better in visuospatial assessment. Architectural education raises issues and challenges which might be quite problematic for the first-year students. Students are expected to gain knowledge, skills, and competence in a new field. Design exercise itself is either undefined or ill-defined. Focusing mainly on the non-working, inconsistent, or missed opportunities instead of positive aspects of the design proposal initiates new challenges that the students must encounter. Students are expected to formulate and manage their problem-solving challenge, which is mostly supported with negative feedbacks and criticism. It is possible to claim that the academic performance of a person who is made to feel worthless by reinforcing their negative judgments about their own skills and competencies decreases. Creativity and innovation, critical thinking, problem solving, decision making, learning to learn, metacognitive awareness, communication and collaboration are the 21st century skills which are the key skills preparing the societies and individual to the future. The COVID-19 pandemic and the measures taken to combat the epidemic, especially emergency distance education, have reminded the vital importance of the skills mentioned above. The skills emerge and develop individually on the basis of personal resources and individual’s social context. The idea that these skills can be improved by means of architectural design education is not a defensible claim within the scientific framework of learning and development. Studies in the areas of learning and development recommend the understanding, evaluation and appraisal of the student’s own personal intellectual and cognitive resources. The design exercise proceeds through processes similar to solving real life problems. The studio environment can be defined as a social learning environment based on problem solving. How first year architecture students appraise their own problem-solving skills has not been studied sufficiently. The benefits of these research can be listed as follows: Students’ individual differences can be revealed. Changes in their academic performance can be observed. Students’ attitudes towards feedback can be explained. The relationship between students’ attitudes towards their own skills and competencies and their academic performance can be observed and studies can be carried out to improve performance. The findings of these and similar studies show that individuals’ metacognitive awareness, self-efficacy perceptions of their knowledge, skills and competencies and their self-control over them are the keys to intellectual and academic development.

Keywords: Architectural education, attention; basic design education; problem-solving; spatial cognition.


Mimarlık Bölümü Birinci Sınıf Öğrencilerinin Kendi Problem Çözme Becerilerine Dair Algılarının Dikkat ve Görsel-Mekânsal Becerileriyle İlişkisi Üzerine Bir Araştırma

Aktan Acar1, Şebnem A. Soysal Acar2, Elif Ünver3
1TOBB Ekonomi ve Teknoloji Üniversitesi, Mimarlık Bölümü, Ankara
2Gazi Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, Çocuk Sağlığı ve Hastalıkları Anabilim Dalı, Ankara
3İstanbul Gelişim Üniversitesi Klinik Psikoloji Programı Yüksek Lisans Öğrencisi, İstanbul

Mimarlık eğitiminin ilk yılında öğrenciler daha önce karşılaşmadıkları türden problemler içeren tasarım egzersizleri ve stüdyo süreçleriyle başa çıkmak durumundadır. Öğrencilerin birinci sınıfın özgün sorunları ve konularıyla başa çıkmak için kullandıkları entelektüel ve bilişsel öz kaynaklarını anlamak büyük önem taşımaktadır. Kendi problem çözme becerilerini nasıl değerlendirdikleri ve dikkatleri başlıca ve öncelikli olarak kullanılan öz kaynakları arasında sayılabilir. Bu öz kaynaklar öğrenci merkezli ve kişiselleştirilmiş sağlıklı ve sürdürülebilir bir öğrenme açısından dikkate alınmalıdır. Özellikle yaşanan COVID-19 salgını nedeniyle alınan tedbirler kapsamında geçilen acil uzaktan eğitim sürecinde öğrenmenin bu boyutu büyük önem taşımaktadır. Bu çalışmanın amacı, mimarlık birinci sınıf öğrencilerinin, mimarlık eğitiminde anahtar rol oynayan görsel-mekânsal becerileriyle kişisel öz kaynakları olarak problem çözme becerilerine dair algıları ve dikkatleri arasındaki ilişkiyi araştırmaktır. Çalışmaya 40 mimarlık birinci sınıf öğrencisi katılmıştır. Görsel-mekânsal becerilere yönelik olarak Raven Standart İlerlemeli Matrisler Testi ve Çizgi Yönü Belirleme Testi uygulanmıştır. Katılımcıların problem çözme becerileri algısını değerlendirmek için Problem Çözme Envanteri kullanılmıştır. Dikkat için STROOP Testi TBAG formuyla çalışılmıştır. Çalışmanın bulguları dikkat, yeterlik algısı ve uzay biliş arasında anlamlı ilişkilere işaret etmektedir. Çalışmanın sonuçları, mimarlık birinci sınıf öğrencilerinin bireysel farklılıklarının gelişimsel bir bakış açısıyla değerlendirilmesinin önemini ortaya koymaktadır.

Anahtar Kelimeler: Dikkat, mekânsal biliş; mimarlık eğitimi; problem çözme becerisi; temel tasarım eğitimi.


Aktan Acar, Şebnem A. Soysal Acar, Elif Ünver. A Research On the Relationship Between Problem-Solving Appraisal, Attention, and Visuospatial Skills of First-Year Architecture Students. Megaron. 2021; 16(2): 212-222

Corresponding Author: Aktan Acar, Türkiye


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