Drilling down Your Topic: Mind Mapping

Creative Commons licensed image posted at Flickr by Patrick Bürgler

Creative Commons licensed image posted at Flickr by Patrick Bürgler

Creating a mind or cluster map of your topic(s) is a great way to help narrow your ideas while visualizing them in a nonlinear way. You can do this with paper and pen, on your computer, or via a web-based mind-mapping application (such as Popplet).


  1. Begin by writing your topic in the middle of the page and circling it.
  2. Now branch off that main circle and create additional circles of information that contain smaller topics within that larger field.
  3. From those smaller circles, make even smaller circles that indicate why you are interested in those topics.
  4. Don’t be afraid to draw lines connecting one circle to another. It’s ok if it’s messy! (Doodling is also allowed if it helps you generate ideas.)
  5. Take a look at the connections you’ve made and write a topic sentence about the connections between those topics.
  6. Share-out: Take a picture or screenshot of your mind map and post it to the comments thread.

48 thoughts on “Drilling down Your Topic: Mind Mapping

  1. Chem442s15b Chem442s15b

    Mind Mapping: Immunology Introduction
    Topic Sentence: Biochemists have many techniques at their disposal that may be used to separate, quantify, and characterize the various classes of immunoglobulins.


  2. William Wall

    Immunoglobins are incredibly diverse molecules, but can be separated and quantified using relatively simple and common biochemical laboratory techniques.


  3. Meredith Ellis

    Hi Ms. Claiborne, I didn’t realize the web addresses had been updated since the first time I downloaded the assignment off of blackboard, I posted this in the wrong location. I can show you that I did have it posted on the correct due date. Same goes for scaffolding assignment 2 and 3. I am sorry. I am fixing this now.


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