Picture of two students looking at a computer screen. Picture of a professor with a computer teaching a small group of students. Picture of a student working at a laptop.



Inspiration is a software program that organizes information in a visual or outline form. It presents the “big picture”. You can use Inspiration to: make visual displays (diagrams, flow charts, concept maps) of course readings, notes or concepts; instantly switch back and forth between diagrams and outlines; use pre-existing templates to display concepts and notes; use signs, diagrams, and clip art to make visual displays easier to follow.


Please click below for an audio of the introduction to Inspiration.


Instructions on How to Use Inspiration

Please click here PDF download to download a pdf version of the instructional guide to Inspiration

Please click below for video demonstrations of how to use Inspiration.

Demo: Getting Started
Demo: How to Download

Technical Requirements and Where to Access Inspiration

Mac System Requirements:

  • Mac 8.6, 9.x or OS X (10.1.5 or later)
  • 5 MB available RAM
  • 10 MB available hard drive
  • 65 MB for full install
  • QuickTime
  • Recommended: Internet Connection

Windows System Requirements

  • Windows 95, 98, 2000, NTO 4.0, ME, XP or Vista
  • 8 MB RAM
  • 15 MB available hard drive
  • 50 MB for full install
  • Recommended: QuickTime and Internet Connection

Go to http://www.inspiration.com/ to download a free 30 day trial of Inspiration.


Picture of a comparison diagram created in Inspiration


Every e-Tool in the e-Toolbox was reviewed by either a UDI Online Project research and design team member, or one or several faculty at five partner institutions who incorporated a specific e-Tool into an online or blended course they taught. Faculty from these partner institutions also requested that students review the e-Tool included in a course or products created through the use of the e-Tool (e.g., documents, videos, audio clips, or other items). Likert scale surveys with open-ended questions were used by respondents.  Feedback from the reviewing UDI Online team member or faculty who used a tool is presented in addition to student ratings when available. 


e-Tool Review Results

Faculty e-Tool Review Results
Number of faculty reviewers: 1

A member of the project research and design team has reviewed this e-tool. The nature of the online learning environment is that it is text based. Inspiration is a great tool for helping to make visual sense of information and to integrate information for multiple sources. Students or instructors could create graphics using this tool. Creating these visuals makes connections between ideas explicit. It allows students to focus on the “big ideas” in a course. As the intricacies of a course emerge, these visuals could also increase in complexity as the course increases to illustrate the contextual nuance to which students will be exposed. For example, these graphics could start as cause and effect charts, but progress to logic diagrams or other more sophisticated flow charts.