Infographics can be incredibly effective educational tools, thanks to their ability to break complex information into easy-to-understand components and to make even dense data engaging. Whether you want to teach your audience about the education industry or you want to use visual content as a teaching tool, infographics are the ideal solution. Discover why visual content is so effective in an educational context and learn how to design and use infographics for education.
Image via Flickr by US Department of Education
No matter what type of information you want to teach, there’s a good chance that written or verbal instruction alone won’t get your message across. After all, not everyone can process language efficiently, and the average person is more apt to forget written or verbal communication than visual information. In fact, most people retain just 10 percent of what they hear and 20 percent of what they read, while they remember 80 percent of what they see.
In addition, most people can make sense of visual material much faster than they can absorb what they hear or read. The average person can process visual content 60,000 times faster than other types of content. Since approximately 65 percent of people are visual learners, adding image-based components to your teaching materials is a smart choice.
Infographics often prove so effective in educational contexts because they use imagery to highlight, explain, or enhance text-based information. They have the unique ability to capture attention, convey information, and encourage data retention despite their complex nature. That means infographics can be ideal for teaching the basics of complicated processes or breaking down high-level data for all types of audiences.
You can use this type of visual content to teach your audience no matter what topic serves as the focus of your infographic. Whether you want to explore education-specific themes or focus on virtually any other industry, you can use infographics to accomplish these goals:
Infographics are ideal for highlighting key events throughout a historical period, helping students understand how events connect to and influence each other, or even rethinking the most important events of a particular era. To make this infographic-style as effective as possible, narrow down the time period or the topic substantially. Doing so will keep the content focused and prevent it from being overly detailed or difficult to follow.
Statistics can say a lot about a subject, but figures alone don’t always make for the most compelling reading material. Instead, adding graphics and short text explanations can make a string of numbers much easier to understand and remember. A data-heavy infographic can also offer your audience insight into a high-level topic and help you position yourself as an authority on the subject.
Encouraging change isn’t always easy, but an eye-catching infographic can educate your audience about an important issue while teaching them how and why to take action. This type of infographic is most effective when it concludes with a strong call to action (CTA) that tells your audience exactly what to do next.
Infographics can be great platforms for educating your audience about processes or for helping viewers work through multifaceted problems. This kind of visual content tends to work best when it brings key issues to your audience’s attention and then provides tips for overcoming the related effects.
Infographics can also teach your audience how to complete a complex procedure. Pair each step with a related graphic to help your audience identify the goal of each stage and understand how to handle it efficiently.
Whether you’re planning a one-time occasion or an annual happening, infographics can help your audience learn about events. Use the combination of visual and text elements to showcase key statistics about attendees or performers, share details about exciting highlights, or inform your audience how to get the most out of the event.
Infographics can be excellent teaching tools, whether you want to use them to teach your class or you want students to develop their own for a graded project. From learning activities to creative assignments, find out how to put infographics to work in your classroom.
Introducing your class to examples of great infographics is a smart way to use visual content in your lesson plans. Not only can this type of visual content increase student interest and engagement, but infographics can also help students learn about important topics ranging from history and literature to math and science. Depending on the focus of your classroom and the level of your students, you could use infographics in a number of learning activities.
Sourcing premade infographics to enhance learning activities isn’t the only way to use this visual content in the classroom. You can also encourage students to develop their own infographics. To make the most of this creative assignment, try one of these strategies:
Whether you have beginner-level or advanced design skills, you can create infographics for education. Take a closer look at the process, whether you want to try a do-it-yourself approach or you’d rather work with a professional team.
First, you’ll need to choose a topic for your infographic. Take care to choose a focus area that will resonate with your audience, whether that’s your seventh-grade classroom, the students taking your online course, or your company’s client base. To choose an appropriate topic, consider recent news in your industry, key findings you’ve collected, or an important issue in your niche.
For additional inspiration, try browsing roundups of great education infographics. Take care not to repeat a topic that another educator or brand has already covered. Naturally, your content won’t have as great of an impact if it isn’t original.
Next, do the research necessary to create your infographic. If you’re telling a story about a subject that’s close to home, such as your own classroom or school, you may have all the data you need at your fingertips. In that case, your research may be as straightforward as analyzing numbers and interpreting statistics in interesting ways.
If you’re telling a story with a wider reach, however, you’ll need external data sources. Try some of these publicly available resources:
Once you’ve done the research and collected the data, you can begin to envision how your infographic will look. Even if your design skills are relatively limited, start to sketch out the story and develop a narrative. Try transforming your data into visual components to get a better sense of patterns and key points. For example, you can use apps like Wordle to create word clouds or Hohli to turn numbers into graphs and charts.
Identify the most important pieces of information, and then use the research you’ve gathered to write short explanations for each point you want to cover. Soon, you’ll have a rough sketch of your infographic, which you can use to select the right layout and design platform to complete the job.
After doing all of the preliminary work, you’ll be ready to select a design platform and create your infographic. While you can choose from dozens of apps, a few stand out as the most user-friendly, even if you have limited design skills or a nonexistent budget. Consider one of these design platforms:
While you’ll want to use DIY design tools to create visual content in the classroom, you may want to consider hiring a professional team to design high-quality infographics for education. When you opt to work with an experienced design team, you can leave the entire process, from ideation to production, to professionals.
When you work with the infographics team at CopyPress, you can expect original ideas, high-level research, clear and concise writing, and expert design. You can also anticipate a look that’s unique to your brand, as contracting a professional team empowers you to step away from cookie-cutter layouts and truly stand out from the crowd.
With their advanced ability to convey complex ideas and communicate high-level information clearly, infographics are ideal teaching tools. To make the most of your visual content, refer to the best practices in this guide as you design and employ infographics for education and teaching.