Visual Learning: Infographics in Education
Post from February 19, 2019
What is #Infographic? Infographic is visual representation of information (statistics, data, knowledge). The first Infographic is dated to late 1700s but became very popular in the recent years, especially in education. It helps improve cognition by using visual imagery and humans' ability to recognize patterns.
So why and how infographics should be used in educational settings? According to the research 65% of people are visual learners (Why We're More Likely to Remember Content With Images and Video (Infographic)). Infographic in the mentioned above article provides us with the statistic of human processing of visual information. So yes, main reason to include infographics in your courses is visual representation of information. It will make the information more memorable and students will retain information better based on visual imagery. However, there are other reasons that also support learning design strategies: "chunking" of the information/breaking information down on smaller pieces, provides information at glance in visual form, provoke minds, enhances interpretation skills, simplifies information. They can be used to highlight, enhance, or explain text-based information of all complexity levels; and most of the cases they are sharable.
Most common use of infographics are: statistical highlights, timelines, step-by-step instructions, helpful tips, informational highlights. We can use them not only for providing students with information but also incorporate them into learning activities and assignments. Students can do their research on the topics and provide the rest of the class with their visual representation of information. Be creative, as you are as teacher might be able to use your students' exceptional work in future classes.
What are the current tools available for creating infographics (most of them go with preloaded customizable templates):
One of the tools I used before is Canva and it has many free options after you sign up. I used it to create a Course Development Process Step-sheet in one of my previous blog posts. #Canva also allow you to work with other visual templates (banners, resumes, posters)
The following article (17 incredible tools for creating infographics (Jan 2019)) provides you with a very good break-down on tools capability, easiness of use and pricing (lots of them have free "basic" versions).