Mind Maps have many applications in academia including providing a visual overview of an exam, planning various stages of tasks and even making presentations. In this article we will focus on one of the most popular uses of Mind Maps: connecting ideas.
Meaning: – A mind map is a diagram used to visually outline information. A mind map is often created around a single word or text, placed in the center, to which associated ideas, words and concepts are added. Major categories radiate from a central node, and lesser categories are sub-branches of larger branches.
Mind maps can be drawn easily with hands and nowadays software are also available
How Mind Maps Help Connect Ideas
Mind Maps or Mind Mapping enhances our brain’s capacity for memorisation through the association of ideas. This is due to a number of principles which we have outlined below:
1. Radiant Thinking:
Have you ever heard a song, smelled some perfume or eaten something which brought a tidal wave of memories to the forefront of your mind? Every smell, taste, sound or sensation can be represented as a set of associated thoughts and reactions occurring in our brains thus these actions can cause an onslaught of ideas and thoughts. This mental process is known as “Radiant Thinking”, the main representation of which is the Mind Map. Your brain is a giant machine of associations, to operate it you just need the right ‘key’.
Our brains are divided into two hemispheres, left and right, which perform a wide range of intellectual tasks called “cortical skills.” These include: logic, rhythm, line, colour, lists, daydreams, numbers, imagination, speech and spacial awareness. The more both sides of your brain work together to integrate these skills, the more brain capacity you will have to memorise information. Thus, a Mind Map, unlike other methods of study, involves numerous active cortical skills and helps you to memorise information quickly.
3. The Power of Images
“A picture is worth a thousand words.” This simple sentence perfectly illustrates this third Mind Mapping theory. Images activate numerous cortical skills which, again, improve our memory and our ability to associate ideas and concepts. Different people have different learning styles but individuals have a recognition accuracy of images between 85 and 95%. So a mind map, which is essentially an image once completed, is an ideal resource to stimulate this brain activity. Images can also be inserted directly into online Mind Maps to boost your memory further.