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Skip to 0 minutes and 8 secondsPETER RAINGER: If I was to choose one technology that's helped me most over my entire career, it would be concept and mind mapping. I use it in both the Tony Buzan hierarchy tree format, but also in the concept map, a network diagram structure. And I utilise both models in my work. I find that when I'm faced with a new challenge, a new project my thoughts become sort of explosive, and interlinked, and cluttered. But the good side of that is creative and energetic.

Skip to 0 minutes and 39 secondsBut when I need to move to the next step and start to crystallise, and form the understanding, and check my understanding, moving through a creative space of documenting that and trying to mind map and concept that map together, enables me to really hone my thoughts and ask key questions and allows me to plan. It moves me from the creative guy to the rigorous planner, the someone who delivers projects and achieves outcomes. And it's my tool for allowing me to move between those two spaces.

Technology for creativity and planning

In this video, Peter Rainger talks about the way he uses concept or mind mapping to plan projects.

Visualising ideas as diagrams or graphical maps has often been mentioned as helping those with dyslexia and other specific learning difficulties but if they are to be used in general learning and teaching situations they need to be made accessible. There is a tendency to share them as a image or use applications that do not work with keyboard access, screen readers or text to speech. Some companies have addressed this issue for example MindView AT and ClaroIdeas.

Other accessible and creative ways of planning using technologies

Try screen based sticky note type applications like Padlet as mentioned by Sarah. The company is currently working to make Padlet more accessible.

Just Press Record is an Mac OS, iPhone / iPad and Apple watch app that works with the VoiceOver screen reader and offers unlimited recording time. You can use your phone for other activities whilst it is still recording and a transcript can be produced in several languages and offering text transcription in several language (iOS, Apple Watch).

If you are a list maker, need reminders and like to share ideas with others Remember the MIlk may be a good option and this application works across several operating systems and portable technologies. There are some aspects that may not be accessible to screen reader users depending on the version used.

What other technology do you know about that enables creativity and planning?

You may also be interested in other related resources which can be accessed from the ‘See also’ section at the bottom of this page.


© This work is created by the University of Southampton and licensed under CC-BY 4.0 International Licence. Erasmus + MOOCs for Accessibility Partnership.

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This video is from the free online course:

Inclusive Learning and Teaching Environments

University of Southampton