Connecting a Digital Europe Through Location and Place

Part of the series Lecture Notes in Geoinformation and Cartography pp 311-322


Routes to Remember: Comparing Verbal Instructions and Sketch Maps

  • Vanessa Joy A. AnactaAffiliated withInstitute for Geoinformatics, University of Muenster Email author 
  • , Jia WangAffiliated withInstitute for Geoinformatics, University of Muenster
  • , Angela SchweringAffiliated withInstitute for Geoinformatics, University of Muenster

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Sketch maps of routes have been widely used to externalize human spatial knowledge and to study wayfinding behavior. However, specific studies on what information and how people recall route information they obtain from verbal instructions by drawing sketch maps are limited. This chapter aims to know how much information, especially landmarks and streets, people recall after following a wayfinding task. We conducted an experiment and asked participants to draw a sketch map of the route they travelled. Landmarks were classified based on their locations on the route. Sketch maps were compared with verbal instructions to analyze what specific landmarks and street information people recalled as well as what other information was added. Our study showed that (1) landmarks along the route were sketched as often as landmarks located at decision points; (2) participants added landmarks and streets which were not mentioned in the verbal instructions. This chapter provides a better understanding of wayfinding strategies and spatial learning.


Route Sketch maps Verbal instructions Landmarks Streets Wayfinding