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C. Mind Mapping
1. What is Mind Mapping (Visual Links)?
A good way to reframe or redefine a problem is to draw the key term and as many visual links as you think relevant. This helps to structure and restructure your thoughts. It is sometimes called visual brainstorming, think bubbles, visual thinking or visual links. Tony Buzan developed this idea into a concept called mind mapping (Buzan, 1993). It works well for individuals and can be used in groups  A mind map is a diagram used to represent words, ideas, tasks or other items linked to and arranged around a central key word or idea. It is used to generate, visualize, structure and classify ideas, and as an aid in study, organization, problem solving, decision making and writing. It is an image-centred diagram that represents semantic or other connections between portions of information. By presenting these connections in a radial, non-linear graphical manner, it encourages a brainstorming approach to any given organizational task, eliminating the hurdle of initially establishing an intrinsically appropriate or relevant conceptual framework to work within. A mind map is similar to a semantic network or cognitive map but there are no formal restrictions on the kinds of links used. The elements are arranged intuitively according to the importance of the concepts and they are organized into groupings, branches, or areas. The uniform graphic formulation of the semantic structure of information on the method of gathering knowledge, may aid recall of existing memories. Mind maps (or similar concepts) have been used for centuries, for learning, brainstorming, memory, visual thinking and problem solving by educators, engineers, psychologists and people in general. Some of the earliest examples of mind maps were developed by Porphyry of Tyros, a noted thinker of the 3rd century as he graphically visualized the concept categories of Aristotle. Ramon Llull also used these structures of the mind map form. People have been using image-centred radial graphic organization techniques referred to variably as mental or generic mind maps or spidergrams for centuries in areas such as engineering, psychology, and education.
Make connections. no matter how crudely drawn. The visual. flexible nature of mapping makes it extremely useful as a device to help us express and think about complex problems. Mapping presents information organized in the way you think it. all mind maps share five basic characteristics: 1. One can also use mind maps as a mnemonic technique or to sort out a complicated idea. 2. How it is implemented? Mind maps have many applications in personal. either as ‘rough notes’. Association. for example. The map’s organization comes close to the way your mind clusters concepts. 5. so your map may show areas where you need to collect more information. complete with patterns and interrelationships and has an amazing capacity to convey precise information.C. Mind mapping is an idea generator. This allows you to test your associations. continuous conscious involvement allows you to group and regroup concepts. try to adopt the viewpoint of a critic seeing the ideas for the first time. It displays the way your mind works. 2. Once your ideas are clustered. spot missing information and pinpoint areas where you need more and better ideas. 4. or anything you like. Moving think bubbles around and creating new potential linkages often provokes new ideas . and wherein grouping and organizing is reserved for later stages). without worrying whether or not others will understand you. making the mapped information more accessible to the brain. summarizing. 74 . Clustering. MIND MAPPING The mind map continues to be used in various forms and for various applications including learning and education (where it is often taught as ‘Webs’ or ‘Webbing’). or can be more sophisticated in quality. including notetaking. Although maps can be and should be highly individualized. which helps get information about it transferred from short-term to long-term memory. links and relationships between seemingly isolated and unconnected pieces of information. 3. Key words. These connections open the door to more possibilities. Mind maps are also promoted as a way to collaborate in colour pen creativity sessions . but simplified. Organization. You can use large paper. brainstorming (wherein ideas are inserted into the map radially around the centre node. during a lecture or meeting. educational and business situations. You can readily add to the map later – and should be prepared to. encouraging comparisons. Ignore all irrelevant words and phrases and concentrate only on expressing the essentials and what associations these “essences” excite in your mind. Making the map requires you to concentrate on your challenge. For example. revising and general clarifying of thoughts. It does not supply raw material. You can feel free to make any association you wish. radial by having one central key word . In addition. Mind maps can be drawn by hand. You can group related ideas of equal importance horizontally and use connecting arrows to denote special relationships or colour code different types of relationships. You can make your map as simple or as complex as you want. without the implicit prioritization that comes from hierarchy or sequential arrangements. one could listen to a lecture and take down notes using mind maps for the most important points or keywords. planning and in engineering diagramming. family. Conscious involvement. When compared with the earlier original concept map (which was developed by learning experts in the 1960s) the structure of a mind map is a similar. as your first map will rarely produce an idea that meets all of your criteria. a blackboard.
This should be followed by a period of concentrated thought. put the map away for a few days. organic and flowing. numerical order or outlines to embrace your branches . In that case.B. If no ideas come after prolonged study. Use emphasis and show associations in your Mind Map 10. map out your impressions and thoughts about it. Then write the key attributes of the issue on branches leading out from the oval. When you return to it. 3. Make the lines the same length as the word/image 7. symbols. Use colors – your own code – throughout the Mind Map 8. 5. using at least 3 colors Use images. Study the map. Then you can use a highlight pen to underline key points and to link related points from different branches. and dimensions throughout your Mind Map Select key words and print using upper or lower case letters Each word/image must be alone and sitting on its own line The lines must be connected. combinations and ideas . 4. starting from the central image. The central lines are thicker. you will probably feel uneasy. you will find that your mind is more focused on the challenge and you will usually experience a moment of insight. Develop your own personal style of Mind Mapping 9. MIND MAPPING Mind map of the mind map guidelines by Danny Stevens Tony Buzan suggests using the following foundation structures for Mind Mapping: 1. becoming thinner as they radiate out from the centre 6. Keep the Mind Map clear by using radial hierarchy. In the centre of a large piece of paper write the key objective and draw an oval around it. during which the insight unfolds into a complete idea . Each branch will trigger other branches and sub-branches until a visual map is laid out with all your main thoughts shown and linked. Start in the center with an image of the topic. In this way you can see new connections. The mapping process usually goes like this: when you are caught with a challenge that defies solution. codes. 2. 75 TECHNIQUES .
This has to do with the way the mind works. type of writing etc. This tends to result in a much higher level of engagement by team members than without graphical facilitation. you should use the model – don’t let it use you. it enables the group to do systems-level thinking. on purpose. because preordained topics impose blinders. . It is a purely subjective tool that is best used when altered to fit the user’s style and personality. Some people prefer to do mapping in the described fashion. And some people. don’t have this ability. Find a comfortable method. follow it through to exhaustion. What are the success factors? It may be appropriate to put an item in more than one place. Often. 2.. to aid such alterations. In fact. then working backwards by combining them into ever-enlarging clusters until an “original” proposition is generated. all meeting participants can share a higher level of thinking and understanding. When our minds see a work in progress – such as a sketch or a mind map – they want to fill in the missing details. then repeat the cycle by generating another initial impression. understanding of science and nature. Coding the colour. This comes in handy when a senior-level executive comes into a meeting late . words and stances that they find personally repugnant. It creates a much higher level of engagement among meeting participants. one map is rolled out in stages and the thoughts are selectively recorded. Models don’t do much good unless users are willing to chase their own thoughts beyond the comfort of their current religious beliefs. and normal protocols of civility. political ideology. can do this. By creating a visual map of the discussion and displaying it as a work in process for all to see. Some people have an innate ability to hold a large number of ideas and concepts in their mind simultaneously and can “see” the connections and relationships between them. which tends to lead to better ideas and solutions. It is best to start a 76 mind map in the middle of an immense chalkboard so ideas don’t prematurely cease upon reaching the edge of a piece of paper. the majority. showing only bits and pieces of a much larger map . Prepare for complexity. The visual map radically speeds up the process of getting this late-comer up to speed on what has transpired in the meeting . Others prefer a very controlled approach that imposes preordained topics on the original proposition. ideas. However. Benefits of mind mapping in meetings 1. MIND MAPPING 3. Alternatively you could draw instead of writing and this may help you bring the diagram to life . Words will pop into mind that may even cause one to blush. But if the method provides the user with a solid jump start. It captures a “group memory” or history of what has been discussed in the meeting so far. the trade-off is worth-while. Instead of repressing them. The point is. Consequently. Others like to generate one initial impression. the whole process can be done in reverse. cross-link it to several other items or show relationships between items on different branches. some people prosper with the model by disciplining themselves to seek and record. 3. This usually diminishes the range of ideas discovered. Alternatively. Go beyond the wall. It enhances the group’s ability to do systemslevel thinking. the following points may prove important. societal norms. record them and see where they lead. listing final snippets of thoughts and observations. There is no “right” way to do mind mapping. rather than using free-floating impressions.which would normally threatens to derail the group’s momentum. The space limitations in a journal format really don’t do it justice.C.
MIND MAPPING Mistakes to avoid with mind mapping  A poorly-designed visual map can take an open-minded. and can experience “map shock. 5. it’s possible to take your mind mapping to its logical extreme. here are mistakes you should avoid when using mind mapping to produce visual maps: 1. Avoid “map shock. if used consistently and systematically. To get the biggest benefit out of visual mapping. 7. leverage your program’s ability to create sub-maps – multiple linked maps. making better decisions and has many other business benefits! . which tends to create visual “clutter” and may be confusing to others. 6. 5. allowing clients to cut energy costs. The map became increasingly complex as he worked on it o ver time and prompted him to think about his business in various new ways. Avoid the conventional wisdom that mapping is simply about inspiration and creativity. Each of these can help to convey additional meaning or context. shapes. Don’t just create text-based mind maps. to enhance lighting quality . To help ensure that your mind maps don’t fall into this category. Don’t create one huge map with everything in it. 8.” Consider presenting information in both mapped and linear formats to avoid overwhelming your audience. which will help them to appeal to both sides of your brain.” An audience can be overwhelmed when viewing a complex visual map. 2. each of which are easier to understand and manipulate. the company closed massive orders for light bulbs. 3. Don’t be arbitrary in your use of color. 77 TECHNIQUES . developing and implementing projects. It’s actually so much more. He wrote down what came to mind. even using it to create your shopping list. and made connections. 4. institutional. Attributes of light bulbs: lifespan. 3. line styles and other visual elements of your map.B. they can cause confusion. be sure to include images in your maps. “4. The key concepts featured on his initial map were: 1. Case Studies Case study 1. and decoration Markets: industrial. Don’t include too much detail in your mind maps. 2.000 distributors to reach his present markets Energy management to conserve costs “Decoration management”. The bubble that produced the final idea was the one containing “energy management”. Avoid using too much text in your topics. colours.1 to 3 words maximum. because it will quickly become unmanageable. drew bubbles. and retail 4. which bypassed the distributors and focused on industrial and institutional markets. 4. Keep your topic names short . left-brained person and completely turn them off to the idea of representing information and ideas visually. As a consequence. Like anything. Used arbitrarily.000 distributors”. It’s too easy to create topics with unnecessary amounts of detail. Use specific keywords to draw your audience into the flow of your map. He wrote “light bulbs” in the middle of a page and connected it with a process. Instead. “Lighting” and a system. It’s a powerful tool for managing information overload. Avoid over-use of visual mapping. He put it this way: “The map led to a cascade of ideas that motivated us to act and create a whole new division”. The idea He created an energy management division. lighting. The vice president of a light bulb company wanted to increase sales. if you share your maps with them. 4.
typepad.asp?a=274  http://mindmapping. Michael.wikipedia.com/Mind_Mapping  http://en. MIND MAPPING Case study 2. 5. Anderson. He wrote “Sigmund Freud” and drew a bubble around it.41-46 Books:  Sloane. 2006. Web sites:  http://www.org/wiki/Mind_mapping  http://www.html 78 . Paul. and that association inspired his idea.com/Articles/ ArticleDetails. which reminded him of psychotherapy. which reminded him of Sigmund Freud. Second Edition. pp.innovationtools. List of References Articles/Studies:  Joseph V.com/the_mind_ mapping_software/2008/01/3-benefits-of-v. The map reminded him of analysis. An entrepreneur looking for new products mapped out various ideas. Ten Speed Press. Mind Mapping: a Tool for Creative Thinking. Toronto. The Leader’s Guide to Lateral Thinking Skills: Unlocking the Creativity and Innovation in You and Your Team (Paperback – 3 Sep 2006).  Michalko. The idea He’s manufacturing a pillow with Freud’s picture on it. The bubble reminded him of a pillow.C. Thinkertoys: A handbook of creative-thinking techniques. and marketing it as a tool for do-it-yourself analysis.mycoted. Business Horizons / JanuaryFebruary 1993.
semantics may also denote the theoretical study of meaning in systems of signs. cognitive models. By the usual convention that calls a study or a theory by the name of its subject matter. which represent concepts and edges. which represent semantic relations between the concepts. 7. code. store. 8. It is a directed graph consisting of vertices. Semantics – studies the practical use of signs by agents or communities of interpretation within particular circumstances and contexts. 79 Question 3: What are synonyms of mind mapping? TECHNIQUES .B. Questions Question 1: How many characteristics does the mind map have? Question 2: During mind mapping activity it is important: Tick to follow strict procedure. Glossary Cognitive maps. or mental models are a type of mental processing (cognition) composed of a series of psychological transformations by which an individual can acquire. mental maps. Semantic network is often used as a form of knowledge representation. recall and decode information about the relative locations and attributes of phenomena in their everyday or metaphorical spatial environment. mind maps. Keywords creativity technique Tony Buzan mind map mind mapping visual thinking visual links problem solving visual map to use free-floating impressions to include as much details as possible Answer: to follow strict procedure. MIND MAPPING 6.
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