Mind mapping is a powerful tool which allows you to plan out in a clear, brief and visual diagram all the information you need to consider about a subject.

As a revision tool it replaces the need to make copious notes which are then hard to remember, and it directs your revision and research so that you create in a nutshell a picture of the important points.

One of the most important aspects of a mind map is that you constantly keep in mind and refer back to the ‘Big Picture’.


Look at the Literature Mind Map Example


You will see that any text can be split into six main branches: Type/Genre, Purpose, Character, Setting, Technique and Plot.

These are called the CONTROLLING CONCEPTS and every subject has its own set of Controlling Concepts. Once you have learned these, you can write a mind map for any aspect of any subject.


Writing a Mind Map


Use a large sheet of paper – A3 works well.

• In the centre of the page draw a circle and in that write the title of the essay or the aspect of the subject that you are revising.

• From that circle draw branches – one for each of the Controlling Concepts (you might find it helpful to use a different colour for each branch to aid memory)

• Begin to plot down ideas as they occur to you by adding ‘twigs’ on the appropriate branch. This automatically organises your ideas whilst still allowing you the freedom to brainstorm.

• When you want to write an assignment or examination, use the ideas from each branch to form a paragraph. You will find that your essay is already structured for you.

• Use pictures and colours to personalise the map to help you to remember details.