Concept maps are a tool to help you:
Ask yourself: what do I already know about my topic? what am I curious about? what kind of data do I need, and where am I likely to find that data?
From a disciplinary perspective, think about what kind of questions scholars and experts in that discipline are interested in, and how they would ask those questions or measure their findings. What types of measurements will they be taking?
Finally, consider what you know about the resources available to you, and the types of sources that would be most helpful for you, and where might be most fruitful for you to begin your search. Are you looking for primary sources, such as newspaper articles? Do you need contemporary news articles or historical ones? If you're following up on the scholarly conversation around your topic, do you need to look for work by historians? Scientists? Sociologists?
The process is simple: start with a subject in the center, then:
A concept map is:
Use a concept map to: