With shifts in nursing education moving from problem-based learning to concept-based learning, Professor Joanne Olsen was searching for a tool that would give her students a visual representation of the linkage between concepts in one of her courses. Wanting to work on her iPad, she found a mind mapping tool called iThoughts and developed a mind map for her course syllabus. At the start of the semester, she shared the map with students to show how the course topics related to each other and to get feedback on whether the sequence of topics made sense to them.
She opened each week’s class with the mind map. “Here’s where we are, here’s where we’ve been, and here’s where we’re going.” She said this cut down on the randomness students sometimes feel when they aren’t sure how topics relate to each other. “In order to have knowledge stick you need to hook it onto a concept,” Joanne said. “It’s important to put all the major concepts out there so students can hook on the lecture or the reading to see where that belongs.”
Her advice for anyone wanting to get started with mind mapping is “just draw it on a piece of paper first. It’s even less complex than a flow chart. The software is pretty easy to learn and there are many free mind mapping tools out there.”
Full episode transcript available in PDF format
Check out Joanne’s mind map
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