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Concept Mapping: A learning Tool

Sep 12, 2016 15:00 IST
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Concept Mapping is a graphical system for understanding the relationship between concepts.


Image source: maryannenestor.com

Concept maps begin with a main idea and then branch out to show how that main idea can be broken down into specific topics. Used as a learning and teaching technique, concept mapping visually illustrates the relationships between concepts and ideas. Often represented in circles or boxes, concepts are linked by words and phrases that explain the connection between the ideas, helping students organize and structure their thoughts to further understand information and discover new relationships.

Here we bring you the 4 most important benefits of concept mapping to show you how the technique supports learning:

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1. Concept Maps Help You Build Better Understanding

Concept maps prove to be very effective in exploring your understanding of a topic you’re studying. Actually, when you construct a concept map, you have to determine important concepts and relationships among concepts. Creating concept maps while studying improves both recall of information and comprehension. A concept map can help you to enhance meaningful learning by interrelating different concepts in networks of concepts and labeling relationships between the concepts.

2. Concept Maps Help You to Have a Quick Interpretation

It is easy to grasp ideas from a concept map much more quickly than by reading them in an article or book. This pictorial mode of presenting information, makes the study more comprehensible. Because of its briefness and highlighting of key points, it's easier to skim through a concept map for a quick understanding of the entire system. Concept maps help people to have a quick view of the possible indirect results of an action or program.

3. Visual Mode of Information Improves the Learning Ability

It's quite obvious that visual symbols are quickly and easily recognized and learned than the extended boring paragraphs of text. So is with the concept maps. Minimum use of text makes it easy to scan for a word, phrase, or the general idea and fed the concerned information into the brain.  Concept maps being a form of visual representation allow for development of a holistic understanding that words alone cannot convey.

4. Concept Maps can be Used as an Assessment Tool

Concept maps can be used to carry out the evaluation of students in schools. After completion of a chapter or unit, teacher should ask the students to create a concept map as homework to check their understanding and captivity over the studied topic. This is how teachers can use concept mapping to illustrate the students’ knowledge of a particular subject more thoroughly instead of giving multiple choice tests.  

So visualizing the importance of concept mapping, give it a try the next time you sit to study. Incorporating concept maps into your study routine is a relatively simple way to experiment with the way you study. Think of concept mapping as a useful doodle and try making it instead of scratching meaningless scribbles in your notes and margins of your textbooks.

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