PowerPoint has the potential to be a great teaching tool, but it is so often misused! This theme was a discussion topic for our Media-Enhanced Teaching course, and it sounds like many of us have experienced PowerPoint as a class killer.
I came into a bit of uncertainty with regards to PowerPoint when I was asked to fill-in for an instructor. This instructor sent me her PowerPoint and said “all you have to do is go through this”. When I previewed the slides, I only made it to the 3rd one before I knew that there was NO way I was going to subject the class to that. The slides were plain – black and white, absolutely no images, and tons of text. BORING!!
So I came up with a plan: I taught the class and used activities to cover the learning objectives. At the end of the class I let the students know that the PowerPoint was available to them for review on their course webpage. I felt like this was a good compromise, and also wouldn’t offend the other instructor. One student even commented after the class that they really enjoyed the class, and that it was very “active” – much better than the death by PowerPoint alternative.