Earlier this week a reader emailed me to ask for my suggestions for online mind mapping tools for her students to use this fall. My preference is often to draw mind maps by hand and then digitize them by taking pictures with either the Google Keep or OneNote mobile apps. But that doesn’t work for everyone. So if you want to do the mind mapping process in a completely digital format, take a look at the following options. 

Canva Whiteboard Templates

Canva’s whiteboard templates include mind mapping templates that you and your students can use individually or collaboratively. Watch this video for an overview of how to access and use those templates. 

Google Jamboard Templates

Google Jamboard doesn’t offer any pre-made mind mapping templates like Canva offers. However, it is easy to make and share your own mind mapping templates in Jamboard. This short video shows you how to do that. 

Google Drawings

Long before Google offered Jamboard, I used Google Drawings to create mind maps to share online. That’s still a viable option for Google Workspace users. Here’s a demo of how to do that. 


Transno is an interesting mind mapping tool because it will create mind maps based on your written outlines. Take a look at this video to see it in action. 


Forky is a minimalist mind mapping tool. I like the simplicity of it compared with some other mind mapping tools that you could use. It does offer an online collaboration option for those who want to use it. See Forky in action in this demo


GitMind is another mind mapping tool that will create printable outlines for you based on your mind maps. Here’s a brief demo of it. 


Last, but not least is Padlet. I’ve used Padlet for mind mapping longer than anything else on this list. If you want to include multimedia elements in your mind maps, Padlet is the tool for you. Watch my demo to see how it works.