Infographics are graphic visual representations of information, data, or knowledge intended to present information quickly and clearly. (wikipedia) For the layman, they can make difficult to understand data or concepts more accessible by delivering only the most important data in an understandable way. When students are asked to create infographics, it requires them to understand the data and concepts deeply enough to be able to distill them into digestible chunks that a layman can understand. Because of this, I highly recommend incorporating an infographic assignment into your teaching.
While there are some free applications (Canva.com) that can be used to create infographics, my recommendation is to use Google Slides. Google Slides is completely free, easy to use, familiar, and the students already have an account! Here’s how you can do it:
Don’t worry about being restricted to the standard presentation size you see in Google Slides. You can change the page to be any size you want!
- You can search the web for royalty free images directly from Slides or you can upload images from your computer (note: Pixabay.org gives you free images to use).
- You can crop your images into shapes and add shadows and reflections.
- You can also add a color overlay to some images to make them work for showing a percentage of people for instance.
- You can add charts (pie, line, bar, and column charts) from directly within Slides.
- You can also connect a chart from Google Sheets that will automatically update when you change the data in your spreadsheet! Can’t do that in Canva.
You can add anything from an org. chart to a timeline from within Slides as well. They are professional looking and easy to update.
Shapes can be used to highlight or group text or data areas on an infographic. Slides offers a wide range of shapes and call outs.
Slides offer a variety of font styles and sizes to meet your needs and the best part is that these will look the same on every computer regardless of the fonts installed on the viewer’s computer, which is critical on an infographic.
Shareable and Collaborative:
Because it’s a Google product it’s easy to share it for group or parter collaboration in creating and easy sharing to turn it in the instructor.