Explore accounting through mind mapping

Let’s face it: making sure your students understand the material you present can be a challenge sometimes. Fortunately, you can greatly increase retention by adding more visual-based activities in your classroom.

A recent study discovered that students are more likely to understand and keep information if it’s presented through a combination of words and imagery.

You may already use visual imagery in your lesson plans, whether it’s adding photos in a PowerPoint presentation or including educational videos. However, there is one helpful technique you may not know about: mind mapping.

Mind mapping is a fantastic organizational exercise that combines not only words and images, but also colors, graphics, and other mental triggers that improve long-term memory. There are endless ways to use mind mapping in the classroom including:

  • Making notes
  • Studying for exams
  • Brainstorming topics
  • Planning essays
  • Producing presentations

Creating a mind map can be as simple or complex as you’d like. The basic approach of mind mapping is pretty easy to grasp. The method includes:

  1. Grabbing a piece of paper and a pen.
  2. Drawing a circle with the main topic of study in the middle of the paper.
  3. Adding branches with important ideas associated with the main topic.
  4. Adding secondary branches with more granular details to each existing branch.

Let’s walk through a simple mind map together and use “sports” as our main topic. In the middle of our paper, we’d write the word “sports” and connect it with a circle. Mind Map 1

The next step is defining the important ideas. In this example, we would add the types of sports that exist. These include individual sports, team sports, water sports, and winter sports.

Mind Map 2


From there, we’d include key information associated with these ideas. For example, under individual sports, we may add cycling, tennis, and golf.


Mind Map 3

Note, students do not have to rely on words alone to make connections to their main point. Encourage them to embrace their creative side by also using visual images and colors.

Now that you understand how mind mapping works, it’s time to use it in your accounting classroom. Click the download link on the right to access an accounting-focused mind mapping activity.