Journal of Cultural Cognitive Science

, Volume 2, Issue 1–2, pp 9–20 | Cite as

Effect of Hindi, Sanskrit and Urdu medium schooling on spatial language and encoding

  • Ramesh C. MishraEmail author
  • Rajesh K. Jha
Research Paper


Spatial cognition refers to the process through which people acquire knowledge of the location of objects in their surrounding environment. Studies suggest that people use different spatial frames of reference to describe the location of objects in space. The present study examines the frames of reference used by 10–15-year-old students attending Hindi, Sanskrit and Urdu medium schools at Varanasi in performing spatial cognitive tasks. Traditional schools, such as Sanskrit and Urdu medium schools, provide substantial experience and training in the use of a geocentric frame of reference based on cardinal directions (i.e., north, south, east and west). In view of this, it was expected that children attending these schools would use a geocentric frame of reference more than those attending Hindi medium school. Using a variety of procedures, the spatial frames of reference used in description and encoding of objects by students in Hindi, Sanskrit and Urdu medium schools were assessed. The results indicated that traditional Sanskrit and Urdu medium school students used more geocentric language for description of spatial objects and they also engaged in greater geocentric encoding of those objects than the students of Hindi medium schools.


Cardinal directions Geocentric frame of reference Hindi medium schools Spatial encoding Traditional schools 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyHarishchandra P.G. CollegeVaranasiIndia

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