The adjective conceptual, which comes from the Latin conceptus, refers to that related to concept: a idea, a judgment, a significance. The conceptual is often associated with the abstract or the symbolic.

Is named conceptual map to a technique consisting of represent knowledge through a graph. Concept maps are networks that relate various concepts, graphed as nodes. The links between them are the relationships that exist between the concepts.


A concept map allows the representation of knowledge through a graph.

Usefulness of a concept map

Thanks to the use of a conceptual map it is possible to give a group of students a synopsis of a given topic. One of the main problems of the traditional educational system is that texts are proposed for memorization, instead of concepts that can be internalized with the tools of each one.

While the sentence “When water in a liquid state reaches 0 ° centigrade it goes into its solid state” does not lead to improvisation, a concept map in which “liquid state”, “0 °” and “solid state” are related »With arrows they allow each person to internalize the phenomenon with their own words. Memorizing the lines of a book is difficult, but possible with a certain degree of dedication, although if the content We are not interested in it, we probably do not understand it or retain it in the long term; A concept map, on the other hand, invites us to understand before memorizing, since the connections we must create ourselves.


The notion of conceptual is used in philosophy.

The concept in philosophy

In the field of philosophy the notion of conceptual scheme. These are symbolic representations of ideas that are based on conceptual connections, prior to experience. All people have the ability to construct conceptual schemes, although these developments will depend on the context (culture).

Continuing in the field of philosophy, it is known as conceptualism to the doctrine that maintains that abstractions do not exist in the external world, although it recognizes that they do appear in the mind in a conceptual way (as concepts).

Conceptual art

The conceptual art, on the other hand, is a movement that favors the conceptualization of a construction site rather than its material representation. Its basis is that the idea behind the work is more important than the object used to transmit it.

Similarly, when creating a work in which graphic art plays a fundamental role, the drawings that are carried out in the initial stage are usually called conceptual, since they reflect the ideas that the person (s) involved in the project initially have, those that once approved will become the very foundations of all the work.

These drawings are often called conceptual art between people from the same field, even if they do not exactly meet the definition given above; Far from being a movement, it is simply a set of concepts expressed on paper through drawings, and many of them are discarded in the phases determinants of the project.

A kind of album

In the field of music, finally, a concept album It is an album in which all his songs are united through something in common: a theme, an idea, etc. That is why these concept albums are conceived as a unit. “The wall” from Pink floyd is an example of a conceptual album.

Of course, a work made up of several pieces or songs that respond to the same theme It is not something that emerged in the twentieth century; Although it is not called that way, we could say that opera is also “conceptual music”; Similarly, song cycles (or lieder, a German term often used globally in academia) that revolve around connected ideas are also connected, such as the Winter trip from Franz schubert, one of his most outstanding works.