Mind mapping is a learning technique that uses several intelligences—visual/spatial, verbal/linguistic, logical/mathematical—to access the potential of the neo cortex and uses both hemispheres of the brain. Originated in the 1960's by Tony Buzan, mind mapping helps learners see an overview of a topic and the details at the same time. It requires the learner to think about key concepts and their interconnectedness. Mind maps help organize information in a form that the brain can easily assimilate. It gives the mind a visual image to aid in recall because memory is associative and not linear. Mind maps are very helpful when problem solving because all the issues and how they relate to each other are clearly displayed.
Mind Map Sample
Sample Essay Mind Map from JCU Skills Online.
Active listening and reading are necessary in order to produce a mind map. Their creation requires interaction with the information, enhancing attention and interest, not just passive intake.
Mind mapping, sometimes called concept mapping, involves starting with a central idea and linking related ideas in a ray or web pattern from the central idea. Knowledge is mapped by focusing on a key idea and then looking for natural sub ideas and the way they are connected to each other and the key idea.
Some suggestions for creating mind maps can be found at JCU Study Skills Online. These include: place the key idea in the center of the paper; use upper case letters to emphasize key points; use graphics as much as possible to represent ideas; use lines, arrows, icons or colors to show the connections between ideas; draw or write quickly to capture ideas without passing judgement or editing; and leave lots of space.
Peter Russell, an associate of creator Tony Buzan has some additional suggestions for mind maps on his web site, "The Spirit of Now". He suggests underlining key words, using printing rather than script, and not being limited by the size of the paper—add extra...
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