Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)


Educational Leadership

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Dr. Bill Flora

Committee Members

Dr. Bethany Flora, Dr. Pamela Scott, Dr. Rick Osborne


A qualitative investigation was conducted to explore the phenomenon of abstract cognition among a purposive sample of 5 secondary scholastic chess club participants. The case study enabled the researcher to explore the faculties of abstract cognition among students of contrasting skills and abilities in playing chess. The study also allowed for the consideration of potential visual-spatial, logical, academic, social competency and life benefits of chess play. Through analysis of interviews, chess simulations, blindfold chess play, and narration of chess lines and sequences, the investigator was able to extract meaning and code schemata into a holistic understanding of the phenomenon of abstract cognition within the context of Piaget’s Formal Operations Stage.

Scholastic chess systematically engages the student in a stimuli-enriched environment in which the participant must exercise optimal cognitive control in processing and anticipating chess lines and sequences, thus facilitating the manifestation and phenomenon of abstract cognition. Abstract cognition as a phenomenon may elicit increased academic, scholarly, and life potential. Participation in scholastic chess may produce both scholarly and critical thinking individuals. Suggestions for future research include continuing qualitative research in the area of abstract cognition among chess players and developing a stronger understanding of cognitive growth in students.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.