Mind Map

by Tuija Irmeli Oksman last modified Jul 05, 2018 02:50 PM

Mind map of the basic concepts

A mind map helps you to organize your thoughts and ideas about the concepts of your topic. There are many ways of drawing a mind map. You can let your imagination run wild, because information searching is a creative process. The basic steps of brainstorming and mind mapping search terms can be, for example, the following:

  • Write the topic in the middle of a paper.
  • Write down all the main concepts and ideas that come to your mind
  • Add concepts and ideas that are associated with the main concepts and so on.
  • There are many online mind map tools, e.g. https://www.text2mindmap.com/

Example: Your research question is the following: What is the impact of globalization on tourism? Brainstorming of search terms starts with identifying the main concepts, in this case tourism and globalization. You can start searching by combining the main concepts into a search statement.

Example Version 1 of a mind map on the topic The impact of globalization on tourism: the main concepts

Synonyms and related terms

You can easily see your main concepts from the mind map. If you're lucky, you can get good results when using them as search terms. Often, however, that is not the case. Therefore, you have to think of alternative expressions and terms that you think might be used in articles discussing the concepts. They may be synonyms, abbreviations, acronyms, related terms, opposite terms and terms in different languages.

Think also of broader terms and narrower terms for each concept. If you get too many results when searching with a broad term, try a narrower term and vice versa.

You should also make use of the thesauri of databases.

You can now make some trial searches in JYKDOK or other databases.

Example:  You made a trial search by combining your main concepts tourism and globalization, but got too many results. Next, you need to list narrower terms and synonyms related to the main concepts (e.g. tourism > masstourism, tourists, travel). In addition, think of concepts related to the main concepts, such as vacations, international relations etc.

Example Version 2 of a mind map on the topic The impact of globalization on tourism: associative concepts, synonyms and related terms