Graphic Organisers

Learning Matters #15 Graphic Organisers 

Graphic organisers provide you with a different way of seeing and thinking about information. A visual representation of your learning can help you understand complex information in a simple way, and recall it later.  You are also more likely to remember or retain information if you have taken a part in producing up. This is called ‘the generation or production effect’ 

Graphic organisers are helpful, because you are actively involved in creating the information, drawing connections between topics and showing how they relate to one another. You are also more likely to remember the image you produced later and be able to recall the connections or relationship between information. 

Below are some different types of graphic organisers for you to try. Keep an eye out in the Plaza for this week’s Freebie. Learning really does matter. It’s why we’re here. Talk to your teachers, tutors or keyworkers about any aspect of your learning. If you’re struggling with what works, we’ll help you find strategies that suit you.  


Mindmaps are highly visual representation of your knowledge and understanding. You can use words and images to create strong associations that help you remember what you're studying 

Ranking Ladder 

The ranking ladder can be used to prioritise or rank ideas and information. It can also be used for topics with a series of stages or steps.  


Sequencing Chart 

When a topic involves a sequence of events, or a process, this organiser can be helpful.  


Venn diagram 

This allows you to show similarities and differences between key concepts, as well as where topics overlap.  


Decision Matrix 

A decision matrix can be used to identify a choice, its advantages and disadvantages, and a decision or judgement. 


Fishbone Diagrams 

Fishbone diagrams allow you to explore many aspects or effects of a complex topic, helping you to organise your thoughts in a simple, visual way. 


Multiple causes and effects 
You can use a multiple causes and multiple effects diagram to identify what happened (effects) and why it happened (causes). You can also use a multiple cause, single effect diagram, or single cause, multiple effect diagram 

Five Ws Chart 
You can use a 5 Ws chart to identify who, what, where, when, and why. You can also throw in So what, to assess impacts. 

Stair Steps 

Stair steps can be used when a topic involves a step by step process or for plotting a course of action. How one thing leads to the next.  


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