Mind maps, otherwise known as concept maps, are a great way to help students deal with the knowledge that they are given. They are tools that can do many things with information, this includes: filtering, interpreting, linking and understanding information. According to the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority [ACARA], 2017) a Year 1 student is expected to make use of a concept map to “show a personal understanding of their world”. Therefore it is known that mind mapping is an important part of the curriculum from the very beginning of a students’ education.
The creation of concept maps online has become more available via free ICT tools such as Bubbl.us (LKCollab, LLC., 2017). Using such tools could be suggested as replacing and/or amplifying a student’s learning as per Hughes, Thomas and Scharbers’ RAT Framework (2006). What this suggests is that not only do programs such as Bubbl.us (LKCollab, LLC., 2017) replace the brainstorming/concept map process with pen and paper but they also create a more efficient and effective way of understanding knowledge and information. The only downside to this way of mind mapping would be the fact that students have the computer at their fingertips, which allows them to copy and paste any information into the mind map. However, if teachers educated the students on how to use the internet when finding information, this might knock down that barricade.
Overall, mind mapping can be a useful ICT tool in the classroom as it helps students to pull information from many different sources and then interpret it and put it into place.
Do you believe that mind/concept mapping replaces and amplifies a students learning in the classroom? How could we go further to transform a student’s learning using a concept map? Is that even possible?
Hughes, J., Thomas, R., & Scharber, C. (2006). Assessing Technology Integration: The RAT – Replacement, Amplification, and Transformation – Framework. Paper presented at the Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference 2006, Orlando, Florida, USA. https://www.learntechlib.org/p/22293.
LKCollab, LLC. (2017). Bubbl.us [Online]. Retrieved July 28, 2017, from https://bubbl.us.