A mind map is a mind map. Also called a “mind map”, it establishes visual connections between several ideas in order to organize them hierarchically. For its part, the PowerPoint software constitutes a suitable medium for formatting mind maps and integrating them into presentations intended to support an oral intervention in front of a team, with management or even in front of a jury.
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On PowerPoint, the mind maps are interactive, allowing all participants to deepen the information provided during the speaking session. The procedure to create and animate a mind map understandable by all on PowerPoint consists of 8 steps.
How to create a PowerPoint mind map?
1 – Choose a slide title
To start structuring the presentation which will integrate one or more mind maps on PowerPoint, you must start by choosing the title of the first slide. Preferably, this title should be linked to the central idea of mind mapping so that the audience for the presentation can easily understand the association between text and image.
2 – Insert an image corresponding to the central idea
The second step in designing a PowerPoint mind map is to place an image on the first slide. To do this, you must first click on “Insert” at the top left of the top menu of PowerPoint.
Then, you have to click on “Images”, then select the desired photograph from the files present in the computer, from the PowerPoint photo library or from the Internet.
Then, using the cursor, you have to place this image in the middle of the slide in order to visually represent the central idea of mind mapping. To name the image, the user must insert a text box above or right next to it. This text box should describe the main idea of mind mapping in just one or two lines.
3 – Arrange secondary ideas
Secondary ideas arise from the main idea of mind mapping. The link that exists between them must therefore be visually represented by the first branches of the mind map.
To represent the secondary ideas graphically, you must start by inserting images, in the same way as for the main idea, ie by clicking on “Insert”, then “Images” and, finally, optionally, on “Photo browser”, “Images from file”, “Images from photo library” or “Online images”.
Subsequently, it is advisable to use a shape predefined by PowerPoint, for example a circle, to align the secondary images with each other and thus form a balanced mind map. To add a shape, the user must go to the “Home” tab, then click on “Shapes” to the right of the second level of the menu.
Finally, you have to choose a shape among those proposed by PowerPoint and place it around the mind map to create a background.
You must use the “Backspace” function to place the shape in the background compared to the images and the previously integrated text boxes.
4 – draw branches
Once the main image and the subpictures are placed relative to each other, you have to start drawing branches in order to represent the connection between each idea. To do this, the user must go to the “Shapes” tab of the menu.
For a line, for example, you must now define the thickness. To do this, the user must go to the “Outline” tab, located next to “Shape fill”. To access this part of the menu, you must first select the shape element by clicking on it.
If needed, the user can rotate the lines to connect the main image to each secondary image using the cursors placed at the ends of the line.
Finally, for a more homogeneous visual effect, it is necessary to put the branches in the background from the “Move back” tab.
5 – Integrate sub-branches
To integrate sub-branches into mind mapping, you have to follow the same process as for the first level of branches, but integrate a visual hierarchy, by drawing finer and shorter lines between the different items, for example.
6 – Set up links to other PowerPoint slides
The interest of creating mind maps on PowerPoint is based on the interactivity of the software. Indeed, it is possible to use icons and make them clickable in order to lead the user to another slide, in order to deepen a specific subject without wasting space on the slides of the main presentation, for example.
In this case, it is important to also refer the reader to the mind map in order to offer him the possibility of easily navigating between the different branches and therefore to create logical connections facilitating his understanding of the subject.
7 – Test the interactivity of the mind map
As for a website, the passage from one level to another by links must be verified before distributing the mind mapping to other users. To do this, just take the time to browse the mind map, starting from the general idea to go to the most specific.
Then, you have to switch to “Slideshow” mode in order to see the mind map displayed in real presentation conditions.
8 – Add animations
Adding animations makes the mind map much more interactive. On PowerPoint, the animations are numerous: fade, dissolve or even checkerboard. To animate the mind map, go to the “Animations” tab in the main PowerPoint design menu.
Then, the user must select each graphic element (each item of the mind map) and associate a type of animation to it. To ensure the consistency of the mind mapping as a whole, you must assign the same animation to all the elements of the same level.
Once the type of animation has been selected from the list above, the user must define the start mode of the animation as well as its duration.
Finally, as in the previous step, it is advisable to test the rendering of the animations before finalizing the presentation. At this point, make sure that the animations appear in a logical order, neither too fast nor too slow in relation to each other, and that the animations correspond to a natural reading direction of the mind map.
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