Fighting “Powerpoint-Death” by Science, Prezi or…?!

24 08 2010
Audience response radio frequency keypad with ...

Image via Wikipedia

Recently Kevin Clauson [@kevinclauson] made another great presentation, called the “Science behind Engaging Students in Class”. The presentation focuses on the use of “clickers” or an audience response system (ARS) to engage the audience (here mainly students in a class). It is an expanded version of “How to Fight Lecturalgia“.

First Kevin asks the audience questions about their knowledge/use of ARS -using the ARS system, of course-. Next he goes more deeply into the need to engage the audience (attention span, boredom) and then he addresses the successes and pitfalls of ARS.

Each statement has a scientific underpinning, and a reference to it.

For instance, one conclusion is that use of ARS improves performance with analytical type exam questions, but not with memorization exam questions.

Kevin stresses that ARS  it is just another tool, albeit a powerful one.

Of course you have to avoid the usual presentation-killer aspects of PowerPoint, like including too many slides, bullets and data, as so wonderfully illustrated by the famous “Dead by Powerpoint” presentation. I included it below, in case you’ve never seen it.

It also contains recommendations how to  improve your PowerPoint.

This following video elaborates on the same theme. It is called “Life after Death by PowerPoint”. Not an appropriate name, because it only magnifies Powerpoints killer-points. You might enjoy it though (if you can put up with the canned laugh).

Below is another presentation about the science of presentations. And although I noticed little science in it, I did find the CEO-presentation interesting because it discusses the use of live tweeting (and blogging) to give “contagious talks” (you know Twitter going “viral”).

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11 responses

25 08 2010
Anne Marie Cunningham

A mine of information as usual! I like using both. A big advantage of powerpoint is that is so much easier to produce a slidecast. For watching online I think audio is essential along with the images (most of the time).
Here is one of my recent slideshares:

But I have also had fun using Prezi. When I was giving this presentation I was able to zoom in on a mindmap which would not have been possible in powerpoint.

So I think that it is horses for courses!
Thanks again,
Anne Marie

29 08 2010

Thanks Anne Marie. Of course, it is “horses for courses”. I agree. But you use both media well and know when to use what. That is a prerequisite.
I don’t get any nausea from your prezi presentation (it looks like a powerpoint ;) and your use of the zoom-effect is functional and not overdone. I get the impression that a lot of people just use it because it is new.

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29 08 2010

I would go with pptplex myself

But it’s a bit unstable.

29 08 2010

Did you try it, Aaron? If so, do you have a link to this presentation (or one you really enjoyed) and can you tell us why it is better than powerpoint or prezi?

30 08 2010

i blogged abt it in oct last year. You can see 3 youtube videos of a ppt i
converted to pptplex.

Since then i used it twice, once internal presentation, once external.

Its a powerpoint addon and using it is natural ,just take 15 min more to create sections.

You can zoom in as well.

But i found it a bit unstable.

30 08 2010

Thanks a lot, Aaron. I will have a look at it later.

1 09 2010
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3 09 2010

Jacqueline – great overview as per (and not just because you included one of mine). I appreciate that this post served as a bit of a stylistic preso aggregator. Quality stuff!


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