Ten simple tips to make PowerPoint presentations engaging and interactive

| July 19, 2014 | 0 Comments

Digital presentations can bring material to life. Use these ten tips to ensure that your audience is engaged and learns the material that PowerPoint can convey.

Software such as PowerPoint can help instructors organize information in a logical and presentable way. Presentations, however, often end up being little better than a written manual. Digital presentations only deliver if presenters make them interactive. There are two ways a digital presentation can be made more interactive: through its production and its delivery.

Interaction starts with slides production

Instructors can make more interesting slides. Even if the subject matter doesn’t seem to be exciting, the actual slide content can be. First, give your viewers scenarios and pose questions to your audience. Experts know that questioning and predicting will help students stay involved. Slides that ask audience members to predict content will get them more engaged with the material. Including questions on review or preview slides is another way to engage students.

Second, include charts and graphics to support content. Tables and columns can help student organize and make sense of information. Arrange things on the slide to encourage. Venn diagrams help viewers to compare and contrast.

PPThird, presenters can add video and pictures to make it more interesting and peg content to the viewers’ memory.

Good presentation techniques keep audience interested

The presentation of content on the slides can also make an impact. The way a presentation flows and the presenter’s actions can ensure that viewers stay involved. PowerPoint has a number of simple tools to create smooth-flowing slideshows. The fourth tip is to use transitions between slides to give your slideshow a professional look and ease students from slide to slide. The smooth transitions help connect content from one slide to the next in your audience members’ minds.

Fifth is to use custom animations on paragraphs, bulleted lists, and photos to ease the viewer into your content.

The presenter also has a lot to do with whether students pay attention. Reading the slides makes little use of the advantages of a digital presentation. When presenters read content verbatim, student are left thinking that they could have read it from a paper page, eliminating the need of a presenter. So the sixth tip is for instructors to paraphrase slides and elaborate on bullet points. The slideshow ought to be more of an outline, with details provided in the notes section below the slide in the edit view of PowerPoint.

Also, students are just as capable of reading slides as an expert, and often gain more from a presentation when they read or are asked to give their interpretation of slides content.
PowerPoint allows for a wide variety of interactive delivery techniques so that viewers attend to the information in the presentation. Tip seven is to make use of the notes printout options in PowerPoint. They are in the Print menu. Choose from several different format options, but the idea in each is the same: viewers have a copy of the slides to follow along with and take notes.

Get students involved in the presentation

Eight: presenters should also check for understanding often by periodically asking students questions about previous slides. They should also call on viewers to explain slides to ensure that the audience understands what the instructor intends.

The ninth way to engage learners is to involve them in activities during your slideshow. Certain activities can break up the monotony of a long presentation. A pair-share is a simple activity whereby students answer a prompt or discuss content in pairs for a minute or so. Writing activities can also help student reflect on and process information.

Finally, if students are at computers connected to the internet, they can perform relevant web searches or research. More ambitious instructors can plan group tasks to be done during a presentation.

Remember, a PowerPoint slideshow is simply a component of an effective instructional presentation. Use these simple tips to make your presentation dynamic, interesting, and effective.

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