Read this title
Let’s ban PowerPoint in lectures – it makes students more stupid and professors more boring.
In a nutshell, the article says, “PowerPoint is bad. For many PPT related reasons, the students do not learn. Lecturers are limited because of it. We banned it. We are now using chalk and the black board and students are learning better”. Yes, this is a very simplified version of the article.
Com’on!!! This reminds me of the whole course book/no course book debate. Just fancier, cause PPT is fancy.
So, is PPT a blessing or a curse? Does it make or break your lesson? Well, if you ask me, ” PowerPoint is just a tool. PowerPoint is not the panacea for a lesson you think will probably be boring. If you know how to use it, your lessons can become more interesting, better. If you don’t, then it can actually be bad.” But as it is a tool, we should use it to enhance our lesson. But remember it’s just that. A tool. If our lesson is boring, badly planned, if we are in lecture mode throughout a lesson, we have lost our learners, no matter how good or bad the PPT is!
Is it teacher centeredness to say that a teacher/lecturer is, up to a point, responsible for the success or ‘floppiness’ of a session? It’s not PowerPoint.
if you read from slides, is it the PowerPoint’s fault or your fault, you are over relying on slides?
If your slides are full of animations flying around, too wordy, and your students are reading your slides, instead of paying attention to what you are saying, are the PowerPoint slides to blame?
If you use PowerPoint to include every single piece of information that’s in your lesson, turning the PowerPoint into your lesson, is it the PPT’s fault?
If you haven’t shared your slides anywhere. If you keep them to yourself and they are like the holy grail of your lesson, why are you complaining if your students write everything down, instead of listen to what you say? You turned your PPT into core material of your class. Is the PPT responsible for that?
If you use lecture mode 24/7, is it the slides fault your learners get tired or even bored?
PowerPoint goes hand in hand with presentation skills. If you are going to use a PowerPoint slide, you should at least brush up on your presentation skills. You don’t just tell your students, look here, there and ”get what I am saying”. It’s like having handouts or a course book, giving it to your students, and saying, “Here! Do what on the sheets!”
To use or not to use
This post is not an answer to the article. This is a post with my thoughts on whether PowerPoint can/should be used in class. PowerPoint does not make you a good teacher. You make yourself a good teacher. Yes, there are bad presentations and bad presenters. I am probably one of them. But, if only we could just ban something and miraculously become better at our job. That seems too easy, doesn’t it? If only a bad lesson was the PowerPoint’s fault. Overusing something is probably not a good thing. Using (not overusing) what technology has to offer to help/inform us is a good thing (me thinks).
Feel free to leave your comments below. FYI: I don’t use PPT in the class every day. I use it when I need it. Excuse the vent/rant 🙂
Till next time……..