Spatial context awareness refers to the ability of a person to perceive or anticipate the spatial relationships among people, objects, events and places. Spatial context awareness also refers to the ability to use one's eyes, hand, body, etc.
Types of Spatial Awareness
Spatial awareness is related to three different types of cognition: spatial awareness, spatial orientation, and spatial processing. The first two, spatial orientation and spatial processing, are usually learned through sensory experiences or through formal training. With respect to spatial awareness, however, it has been shown that individuals can learn how to become more aware of spatial relationships through systematic training and practice.
Spatial Awareness and Cognitive Ability
Spatial awareness is one of the most important types of cognitive ability, especially for those who work with the elderly. People with Alzheimer's disease may have trouble performing basic tasks such as walking and talking. Those with other types of dementia, such as vascular dementia, may also have difficulty doing these tasks.
The Levels of Awareness
Spatial awareness can be categorized on different levels depending on the number of experiences that need to be undergone in order to become proficient at it. There are three levels of spatial awareness, based on the degree of learning required in order for a person to become skilled.
The first level of spatial awareness, basic spatial orientation, refers to the ability to identify and recognize the spatial relationship between two or more objects. Basic spatial orientation requires only that the person be able to recognize that there is a difference between his/her current position and the location of two or more items. For instance, if a person is standing in front of a chair and needs to move to the left, he/she will be able to do this with basic spatial orientation. On the other hand, if a person is standing in front of a table and needs to move to the right, he/she will need to know which direction is to the left.
Context Awareness and Processing
Spatial context awareness, or spatial processing, involves the ability to make sense of space. In fact, many people refer to the ability to "model" space using their bodies. Individuals who do this practice to make sure that they look at every object in the room and then try to see it from a different perspective.
Some people describe the ability to model space in terms of their thoughts and feelings. In other words, they might describe objects as moving through space, rather than being able to visualize the space itself. Other people refer to the ability to "model" space as the ability to turn oneself into a piece of space by changing ones' position or size.
Spatial awareness is an essential skill that everyone should learn. It is one of the most important cognitive skills available.