Conceptual change-multiple routes, multiple mechanisms: A commentary on Ohlsson (2009)

Clark A. Chinn, Ala Samarapungavan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


This article presents a commentary on Stellan Ohlsson's (2009) theory of conceptual change by resubsumption and competitive evaluation of cognitive utility. We note two features of Ohlsson's theory that we think are particularly strong. We then argue that Ohlsson's theory explains one route to conceptual change but that there are many other routes to conceptual change that require mechanisms other than Ohlsson's. We discuss a number of these multiple routes to conceptual change. Theories of conceptual change should attempt to explain the broad diversity of routes along which conceptual change occurs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)48-57
Number of pages10
JournalEducational Psychologist
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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