Designing Effective Projects : Graphic Organizers
Concept Maps


Causal Maps
Causal maps are a special kind of concept map. These maps help learners create visual representations of cause-and effect-relationships. Analyzing cause-and-effect relationships is important in understanding complex systems, such as historical events, novels, or destruction of animal habitat.

The Seeing Reason Tool* promotes cause-and-effect thinking through visual mapping. Learners create visual representations of relationships in a cause-and-effect investigation. These maps make thinking visible and promote collaborative refinement of understanding.

The Seeing Reason Tool:

  • Maps cause-and-effect relationships
  • Helps learners analyze complex systems
  • Communicates understanding visually and promotes collaborative work

Example Causal Map:

This causal map is taken from the Seeing Reason Project Plan, Charlotte’s Web* (original project - not adapted)

By using clustering and causal maps, both learners and teachers can visually represent their knowledge and organize their information in logical and meaningful ways. Each map serves its own purpose and can be adapted in a variety of ways, in all types of classroom situations. 


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