Inspiration

Inspiration is a mind mapping program that helps with the planning and organising information.

In Inspiration, you think and learn visually. When you work with visual representations of ideas, you easily see how one idea relates to the others.

It has two main views or environments:

Diagram view – To create a graphical organizer or a map showing how ideas or concepts interconnect.

image of an example of inspiration diagram view

Outline view – Converts your diagram to a linear plan. This is useful for writing a report.

Image of inspiration outline view

As you work, both views keep track of your work.

Inspiration’s combination of visual and linear thinking helps:

  • deepen understanding of concepts
  • increase memory retention
  • develop organizational skills
  • tap creativity

Applications of Inspiration

Essay and Project Planning from Scratch - helps students to brainstorm their initial essay or project title, and build up model into paragraph and section headings.
Organising Existing Lecture Notes - helps students revise what has been learned and check that there are no gaps.
Mental modeling - helps students to understand difficult concepts.
Timeliness showing how ideas have developed over time - for example, “what was the impact of Piaget or Montessori on the British education system?”
Exam Revision - students can devise content-free diagrams and use them to revise exam subjects.
Web Page Design - students can construct a web page from an Inspiration brainstorm.
Diagrams for Presentations - students can create flow diagrams or overview mind maps which can be copied and pasted into Word or PowerPoint for presentations.

When you start Inspiration it opens in Diagram view.

You will see a white screen with toolbars across the top, and a symbol in the centre of the screen, with the placeholder text, Main Idea, selected. Just enter a topic to get started.

The main idea in Inspiration is to use boxes, arrows and symbols to represent your ideas and the relationships or links between them. These can then be converted to a linear outline or plan.

image of some toolbars in inspiration diagram view

There is a library of symbols which can be selected from the symbols palate to make a particular point or idea particularly distinctive. You can also add your own images to th palatee.

image of the library of symbols palettes in inspiration

You can add notes to extend a mind map with extra information, while continuing to work in a visual format.

This note is added into the outline and appears when the ‘map’ is looked at in outline view.

Image of adding notes to a mind map

Changing the colour of the symbols helps distinguish items in a diagram and is often used to identify a group of related ideas.

You can also change the type and direction of links and add text. Links show the connections and relationships between ideas.

image of colour coding different symbols in inspiration

You can further enhance a project by integrating resources from the internet. You can also hyperlink to a document created with Inspiration or another application.

Next you can see some examples on how you can use Inspiration to create diagrams that can help your study.

Remember, while you are creating a visual map of your ideas in Diagram View, Inspiration has also been working behind the scenes, building an outline of your work.

Inspiration‚s diagramming and outlining environments are fully integrated. You can move between the two views just by clicking a button on the toolbar.

You can also paste all or part of the Diagram View or the Outline View into Word or PowerPoint by using Copy and Paste.

Example: How can Dyslexia Support Services help students at Kingston University?
Image of example 1

Example: Design a leaflet to show Hungary as a new EU member.
image of example 2

Example: What creates Italian Style?
image of example 3

Example: Show how the fashion in Shoes has changed since the 1960s.
You can build up your time visually before you write your essay.
image of example 4

Example: Describe the work and influence of any four famous psychologists.
image of example 5

Example: You can also create another diagram to remember a sequence of dates regarding the works of the four psychologists.
image of example 6
To get help in using Inspiration see the User Guides page.
For further information see the Help and Support page.