Istituto per le Tecnologie Didattiche     
Trentin G. Graphic tools for knowledge representation and informal problem-based learning in professional online communities. In: Knowledge Organization, vol. 34 (4) pp. 215 - 225. Ergon Verlag, 2007.
The use of graphical representations is very common in information technology and engineering. Although these same tools could be applied effectively in other areas, they are not used because they are hardly known or are completely unheard of. This article aims to discuss the results of the experimentation carried out on graphical approaches to knowledge representation during research, analysis and problem-solving in the health care sector. The experimentation was carried out on conceptual mapping and Petri Nets, developed collaboratively online with the aid of the CMapTool and WoPeD graphic applications. Two distinct professional communities have been involved in the research, both pertaining to the Local Health Units in Tuscany. One community is made up of head physicians and health care managers whilst the other is formed by technical staff from the Department of Nutrition and Food Hygiene. It emerged from the experimentation that concept maps are considered more effective in analyzing knowledge domain related to the problem to be faced (description of what it is). On the other hand, Petri Nets are more effective in studying and formalizing its possible solutions (description of what to do to). For the same reason, those involved in the experimentation have proposed the complementary rather than alternative use of the two knowledge representation methods as a support for professional problem-solving.
Subject Knowledge representation
Problem solving

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