Nowadays, more than ever, information is everywhere.
And so much of it!
In 2009 already, in the Harvard Business Review, Paul Kemp was talking about Death by Information Overload while Oksana Tunikova, nearly a decade later, asks Are We Consuming Too Much Information? and is defining this new reality…
“Information overload is the state of feeling overwhelmed by the volume of information to the point at which one feels more confused than knowledgeable about a particular topic. Information overload can manifest itself as brain fog and difficulty making decisions.”
From healthy relationships to understanding the world we live in, we know for sure that clear communication is the key to success. Of course, it is no different when it comes to education.
Therefore educators have a crucial role to play when teaching: not only do they have to deliver content and teach students how to learn, but they have to do so in an effective way, adapted to today’s reality. Avoiding long written pieces in favor of visual communication is one excellent method of sharing ideas and data.
And most importantly, teachers need to encourage students to also express themselves clearly and creatively: using infographics and data visualization can achieve that.
For Column Five, infographic is “where data meets design“. Playing with different attributes like color, size, orientation, and even flicker, in order to produce creative work that informs, engages, and inspires. Communicating complex information through design can take place in all the different subjects taught in school, for all ages and can be applied to all sorts of information including processes, hierarchy, anatomy, chronology…
Furthermore, David McCandless, founder of information is beautiful claims his goal is to help people make clearer, more informed decisions about the world. He turns complex data sets into beautiful, simple diagrams that bring to light unseen patterns and connections. Good design, he suggests, is the best way to navigate information excess, and it may just change the way we see the world.
As I had to adapt a presentation for our first-ever 2021 graduating class going through The International Baccalaureate® (IB) Career-related Programme (CP), it was an opportunity to apply my new understanding of infographics and its purpose.
We already have a Google Slides presentation geared toward the Extended Essay of the IB Diploma Programme, but I felt that this class needs its own.
I wanted to discover Piktochart, which claims to “quickly turn any text- or data-heavy content into a stunning report, presentation, infographic, social media graphic, or printable and I used one of their free template.”
I used one of the templates available with the free account (below, right) and adapted it (below, left), and enjoyed playing around with it. One can see that is not perfect (yet): lack of alignment – questionable background color… Works in progress!