The Benefits of Node Link Mapping

The Benefits of Node Link Mapping

Node-link mapping is a simple technique for presenting verbal information in the form of a diagram. Importantly it has been shown to have positive benefits for practitioner interactions with clients and also on outcomes for clients.


Node-link Mapping has many acknowleged benefits including:

Improving Communication

Supporting peoples' change can be thought of as a problem-solving exercise, so a clear, shared understanding of the issues is important to facilitate communication. Maps provide a clear visual representation of issues, and have less word clutter than traditional oral or written material.

Node-link maps have been shown to be particularly helpful for clients with less education, and for clients with ethnic backgrounds different to their workers.

Mapping also enhances clients’ own perceptions of their communication abilities, so building confidence and self-esteem

Improving Focus

Mapping provides a way to cluster information meaningfully, as well as providing a simple summary to guide and focus discussions. Evidence suggests that maps help keyworkers and clients maintain their focus and attention, and mapping has been shown to benefit clients with attentional problems

Producing Ideas

Keyworking sessions may need to cover a lot of ground in order to resolve a particular problem. Node-link maps can provide a strategy for idea generation, and may also facilitate causal thinking by making clients examine what influences their behavior, or what may happen next. This may be useful when keyworkers and clients are struggling to remember details, or are in need of a fresh approach.

Improving Memory

The effectiveness of keyworking is determined, in part, by how well a client remembers session information. Node-link maps have been shown to enhance the recall of information in both educational and clinical settings.


In clients with low self-esteem, learning disabilities or autistic spectrum conditions it can also help to take the focus of each other and help clients to relax.

Hugh was trained in Node-link Mapping training by two colleagues trained by Dwayne Simpson at the Institute for Behavioural Research (IBR) in Fort Worth, Texas, and he worked in collaboration with the National Treatment Agency on several components of the International Treatment Effectiveness Project (ITEP).

Click here for more details on booking training on Node Link Mapping.

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