Graphics for Training Example: Using Maps

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Recently, we’ve been writing a series of posts about using visuals to improve the effectiveness of your training materials. You can check out articles about organizing visuals to aid perception, directing the learner’s eyes, reducing realism, and making abstract concepts more concrete. There are two more to come in this series, and then we’ll be creating something that summarizes them all in one handy guide–so wait for that.

That post on making the abstract more concretes lists several techniques for doing just that. One of those is using maps and mapping concepts within your training visuals. We saw a really great and fun example of that in a New York Times visual called “Up Close on Baseball’s Borders,” which uses colored regions on a map to show where the fans of different major league baseball teams live. Seeing this information laid out on a map is a great example of how effective this technique is. Just imagine trying to digest this same information if it were presented in numbers within in a table.

You can check out the image below or read the article at the NYT site (they have a series of images that also include interactive elements–it’s a cool thing they made, and just in time for summer baseball fans).

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The courses in the Convergence Training training libraries make use of this technique and many others, so check ’em out. And don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or want to talk about adding to your current training programs.

Jeff Dalto, Senior Learning & Performance Improvement Manager
Jeff is a learning designer and performance improvement specialist with more than 20 years in learning and development, 15+ of which have been spent working in manufacturing, industrial, and architecture, engineering & construction training. Jeff has worked side-by-side with more than 50 companies as they implemented online training. Jeff is an advocate for using evidence-based training practices and is currently completing a Masters degree in Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning from Boise State University. He writes the Vector Solutions | Convergence Training blog and invites you to connect with him on LinkedIn.

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