PowerPoint: Powerful? Notsomuch…

From The Chronicle of Higher Education:

A study published in the April issue of British Educational Research Journal found that 59 percent of students in a new survey reported that at least half of their lectures were boring, and that PowerPoint was one of the dullest methods they saw. The survey consisted of 211 students at a university in England and was conducted by researchers at the University of Central Lancashire.

Students in the survey gave low marks not just to PowerPoint, but also to all kinds of computer-assisted classroom activities, even interactive exercises in computer labs. “The least boring teaching methods were found to be seminars, practical sessions, and group discussions,” said the report. In other words, tech-free classrooms were the most engaging.

Now, I’m not sure the survey supports the journalist’s conclusion – there are tech-loaded ways to engage students and catalyze classroom conversation and deeper thinking – but the message holds:  Just because  you used your computer to put a slide on the board doesn’t result in engaged learning.

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One response to “PowerPoint: Powerful? Notsomuch…

  1. Ppt is no different from anything else: it’s as good as you make it. But ‘good’ is something different for students and teachers. My 8th graders HATE clipart, snazzy transitions and fancy ridiculous backgrounds. It’s school, not entertainment.

    I use ppt every day, but often just as a substitute for writing on the board.

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