Continuing professional development is a career long, systematic process to maintain and develop professional competence, creativity and innovation. Undertaking high quality CPD is particularly important in today’s fast moving technological world as the pace of change can soon make previous learning out-of-date.
At www.continuingprofessionaldevelopment.org, MindGenius Mind Mapping software is a tool that we use to develop and present our online courses. MindGenius Mind Mapping software is an important component of our engineering and project management consultancy and so it was a logical extension to incorporate the features and benefits of MindGenius Mind Mapping software into our online courses. Here’s how we do it.
We use the mind map layout to create course overviews so that users can view the course outline in pictorial form and see a map of their course journey. What are the main points that will be covered and in what order? In this format the course overview is compact and fits onto one A4 page, so it provides a comprehensive outline that can be absorbed at a glance. The overview for our Fundamental Project Constraints online course is included as an example.
For those who prefer a vertical listing in a table of contents style, we use MindGenius to export the mind map overview and create a PDF.
HTML Web pages
One of the most powerful features of MindGenius is the ability to create HTML web pages from the original mind map. We use this valuable feature in our Stakeholder Identification and Analysis online course to convert large amounts of information into easy to navigate web pages. One of the key benefits to users is that substantial quantities of information that would be boring to read are delivered in an easy to browse format. In addition, not everyone wants to follow a linear, start-to-finish path. A navigation bar to the left of the screen allows users to move through the webpages in any order or sequence. The ability to append notes and images provides a data rich browsing experience and the ability to easily locate information, move laterally, backwards and forwards through the data. Webpages provide the ability to browse and click on the piece of data that you want to explore. A screen shot of our MindGenius generated webpage on Stakeholder Identification is shown below.
Creating work breakdown structures
MindGenius Mind Mapping software and our online course on the Work Breakdown Structure are a natural fit. All the work breakdown structures in our online course are created from MindGenius mind maps and presented in a variety of layouts available in MindGenius. MindGenius Mind Mapping software is great for creating a work breakdown structure in graphical layout with the high level tasks either across the top of the page, or down the right hand side. These were included in our course as web objects so that users can scroll down to see the full work breakdown structure. An example is shown below.
Project Scheduling and Gantt Charts
A MindGenius Mind Mapping software feature that we often use in project management is the ability to convert the work breakdown structure in mind map format to a classic Gantt chart, and then to move seamlessly back and forth between the two views. Any changes made in the mind map are reflected in the Gantt chart and vice versa. This is a quick and easy way to produce and update your project work schedule. And your work breakdown structure is updated at the same time. We used this feature to produce example Gantt charts in our Project Work Scheduling online course.
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Enhancing your skills and knowledge will help you provide top quality professional services and take advantage of new career opportunities as they arise.
Vivian Kloosterman is the founder of Continuing Professional Development with over 30 years of professional experience in the fields of professional engineering, business leadership, governance, risk management and project management.
Continuing Professional Development offers a series of online courses which provide a flexible and cost-effective way to increase your knowledge and meet CPD requirements. Our online courses provide anywhere, anytime access, where practical skills can be gained as part of an online community, supported by expert course facilitators. To find out more about how our online courses provide essential skills go to: www.continuingprofessionaldevelopment.org