Geografie 2016, 121, 279-299

What does a map-skills-test tell us about Czech pupils?

Martin Hanus, Miroslav Marada

Charles University in Prague, Faculty of Science, Department of Social Geography and Regional Development, Centre for Geographical Education, Prague, Czechia

Received September 2015
Accepted January 2016

The paper focuses on the impacts of the general education curriculum reform that has placed the pupils’ skills in the foreground of interest. Map skills are one of the most important groups of geographical skills. A test of map skills was drawn up in order to evaluate the level of map skills among pupils aged 11, 15 and 18. Its implementation proved, among others, the elementary assumption that map skills develop along with pupils’ growing age. It was also proven that Czech pupils primarily master cognitively less demanding operations with maps such as location of objects in the map, while more difficult uses associated with map reading and analysis of information posed rather serious problems to them. Statistical figures showed that girls faced the problems significantly more often than boys. Last but not least, it was proven that pupils have not acquired map skills on such a level as prescribed by the curriculum for a given educational level.


The study was supported by the Czech Science Foundation, project No. P407/16-17749S “Factors influencing map skills development in Czech schools”.


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