What is a Concept Map?

Concept maps are a graphical tool that is used to visualize meaningful relationships among concepts.

It’s used as a knowledge representation tool, meaning they basically represent the knowledge structure that we humans store in our minds about a certain topic.

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The Ultimate Guide to Concept Maps: From Its Origin to Concept Map Best Practices

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The first step is to identify a topic you need to study with your concept map. This could be an idea, a question or an issue.

For example, let’s say you are interested in SEO or Search Engine Optimization.

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Step 2: Do a Quick Brainstorm

What are the facts, ideas, concepts, themes, queries etc. that come to your mind when you think about this topic?

Note these down as you brainstorm around the topic you have selected. Remember to keep these as concise as possible.

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It’s recommended to start a concept map from the top and develop it downward, although you can put down your topic at the center and expand it outwards.

Either way make sure that the central topic stands out from the rest (use a bigger node, a different color etc.).

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Step 4: Connect the Concepts

Now it’s time to connect what you have brainstormed to the central topic and to each other. Remember, the more important the idea, the closer it should be to the top or the center.

As you identify these connections put down the linking words or phrases to indicate the relationship between the two concepts you are linking.

Once the direct connections between concepts have been identified, look for crosslinks that link together concepts from different areas or domains.

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Scrutinize what you have created to make sure that you haven’t missed anything and that the relationships you have identified make sense.

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