Basics of mind

Study Guides and Strategies

by another Man’s

Study guides
  • Time, stress and

Problem solving

  • Studying/learning;
  • with others, and in the classroom

  • Thinking/memorizing;
  • Directing your thinking series

    Basics of mind/concept mapping

    Many of us have learned to outline information in our studies, as:

    1. First item
    2. Second item
    1. sub item
    2. sub item
    1. sub sub item
    2. sub sub item
  • Third item
  • Alternatives to outlining are mind- and concept-mapping.

    or of paragraphs using sentences.

    Think in terms of key words or symbols

    that represent ideas and words:

    Other options for mind-mapping:

      • a pencil (you’ll be erasing!) and a blank (non-lined) big piece of paper
      • a blackboard and (colored) chalk
      • "post-it" notes

      Write down the most important word or short phrase

      or symbol for the center.

      Think about it; circle it.

      Post other important concepts

      and their words outside the circle

      Edit this first phase

      Erase, edit, and/or shorten words to key ideas

      Relocate important items closer to each other for better organization

      If possible, use color to organize information

      Link concepts with words to clarify their relationships

      Continue working outward

      Think weird: combine concepts to expand your map or; break boundaries

      Develop in directions the topic takes you–not limited by how you are doing the map

      As you expand your map, tend to become more specific or detailed

      Set the map aside

      Later, continue development and revision

      Expand the map over time (right up to an exam if necessary!)

      This map is your personal learning document

      and what you may need to complete your "picture"

      Note the descriptive links for the arrows

      for "evapotranspiration" and "condensation"

      Thinking and recall series

      Concentrating | Radical thinking | Thinking aloud/private speech |

      (advanced organizers). The technique of concept mapping was developed by Joseph D Novak at Cornell. "Concept maps have their origin in the learning movement called constructivism. In particular, constructivists hold that prior knowledge is used as a framework to learn new knowledge. In essence, how we think influences how and what we learn. Concept maps identify the way we think, the way we see relationships between knowledge." Grayson H. Walker, Concept Mapping and Curriculum Design, Teaching Resource Center, The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga See also:

      "The Mind Map Book: How to Use Radiant Thinking to Maximize Your Brain’s Untapped Potential", Penguin Books, New York. More information is available in a Mind Mapping FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) Document.

      The CmapTools client is a free mapping toolkit. In particular, schools and universities are encouraged to download it and install it in as many computers as desired, and students and teachers may make copies of it and install it at home. Flash exercise contributed by Aaron Shapiro & Dustin Schiltz; Luoise Lystig Fritchie (faculty), Interactive Media (DHA 5341) School of Design, University of Minnesota

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