Skip to 0 minutes and 7 secondsToday we are here to teach you a valuable creative tool, which is used by everyone from consultants and project management professionals, to housewives and academics. It is so popular because it is an ingenious and effective way to organize a large amount of information in an easy-to-read form. Mind Mapping was popularised by Tony Buzan in the 1970s, though the use of radial diagrams for similar purposes dates back centuries before this. The key idea is to create a diagram centering on a main theme or core idea, and to arrage all the component or sub-ideas around it, in a shape mimicking the branches of a tree or the rays of a sun.

Skip to 0 minutes and 58 secondsPerhaps it is this natural element that makes it easy-to-read and understand, and part of why the tool is so accessible and widely used. We begin by looking at some examples of mindmaps, and going through the basic steps in order to create one. We will then invite you to have a pencil and paper handy while we watch a short video together, which contains a large amount of rather complex information. More important than absorbing or understanding all the information, this is an exercise for you to plot a mindmap of your own.

Skip to 1 minute and 38 secondsLet's see if we can create a mindmap in order to condense, organize, and neatly present all of this information format that's easier to understand than the one in the video. Here are some examples of mind maps created for different purposes.

Skip to 1 minute and 56 secondsRight, now let's run through the steps needed to make a mindmap.

Skip to 2 minutes and 1 secondStep 1: Decide on the central idea, and write it in a circle in the center of the page.

Skip to 2 minutes and 9 secondsStep 2: Each core idea that you identify that directly relates to the central idea should radiate as a tree branch from the central circle. You may use different colors or small pictures or diagrams to illustrate the 'tree branches' if you so wish.

Skip to 2 minutes and 29 secondsStep 3: Subsequent sub-ideas should be organised where they belong in the overall structure. Try to group ideas together to create smaller branches off a central one. One smaller branch may connect with two of the core ideas, in which case it should be positioned between them.

Skip to 2 minutes and 50 secondsStep 4: Review your work, and erase and re-organize ideas if necessary. Make sure to leave room for new ideas to emerge later or as you continue to use your mind map.

Mind mapping

Mind Mapping was popularized by Tony Buzan in the 1970s, though the use of radial diagrams for similar purposes dates back centuries earlier. The key idea is to create a diagram based on a central theme or core idea, and considering all the components or sub-ideas around it in a shape that mimics the branches of a tree or the rays of the sun.

Perhaps it is this natural element that makes it easy to read and understand, and part of what makes the tool so accessible and popular.

Steps needed to make a mind map:

Step 1: Decide the central idea

Step 2: Enter the core idea that directly relates to the central idea.

Step 3: Try to group ideas together to create smaller branches off a central one.

Step 4: Review your work

Share this video:

This video is from the free online course:

Using Creative Problem Solving

National Chiao Tung University