Using Power Point presentations in Education: A brief discussion

Using Power Point presentations in Education: A brief discussion

Presentation software such as MS PowerPoint has become an integral part of instructional settings, specifically in large classes. These are more often used in information exchange rather than skill development.

PowerPoint presentations are a great way to complement lessons in classrooms but if they aren’t used carefully, it may lead to student disengagements and may also hinder learning.

The different advantages of using Power Point Presentations in education

Some potential benefits of using presentations in education are:

  • Increasing visual impact among the audience.

  • PowerPoint presentations are engaging and gratifying when used in the right way.

  • Improves the focus of the audience.

  • Helps in providing highlights and annotations.

  • Helps in increasing interactivity and spontaneity.

  • Visual information is always more compelling than textual information. Students benefit more from lessons through presentations than simple textual lessons.

  • Increases wonder among your audience.

  • Enriches curriculum.

There are many more. But like I said before, these pros will only come out if the presentations are used in the right way.

So how can you use PowerPoint in the best possible way? Let’s see.

  • Decide on your approach

MS PowerPoint gives you the option to incorporate both text and images in your slides. It also gives you the option to incorporate video and audio in your slides. You have to decide on your approach based on the circumstances.

There are 3 possible approaches that are:

  • Text-heavy presentation: I already said before MS PowerPoint gives you the freedom to use images, text, videos, audio etc. as per your wish. You can choose your presentation in such a way that it’ll have maximum text to that of images/videos/animation etc. These text-heavy presentations can be used as an alternative to students’ notes.

  • A few images: In this version, you can sacrifice some of the completeness of the study material to make space for explanatory images. This mixed approach makes the matter more appealing to visual learners. If you are giving your presentation in a large class, this one’s the way to go.

  • Image-heavy presentation: Like the name suggests, this version depends almost completely images. These image-heavy versions signify that students have to make their own notes on basis of the images provided in the presentation. These presentations are considerable not suitable for studying. Consider these presentations as some sort of a visual clue.

So what approach are you going to take? The decision rests with you.

  • How to design PowerPoint presentations in the best possible way

Follow these steps as closely as possible to get the best results:

  • Size of the text: The text must be clearly readable, even from the back of the room. If you cram in too much text or reduce the font size to the bare minimum, it goes without saying that the presentation will be difficult to read.

  • DO NOT cram in text: A simple rule of thumb to follow to avoid doing that is NOT to include too much text. A tip: Try not to include 6 words per line.

  • Decent contrast: Maintain a decent contrast on the slides to make the text easily readable. Use light text on dark backgrounds and vice versa to get the best results.

  • Animations: Use animations sparingly and consistent to keep a low level of distraction.

  • Template: Don’t change the template. Your basic format should be minimal and consistent.

  • Use visual information: Using images and graphics make your presentation more appealing to the masses. Consider using them.

A few other things that you can use in your presentations:

  • Shapes,

  • Clip art,

  • Change font,

  • Charts,

  • Tables,

  • Animations,

  • Animated text.


  • How to deliver the best presentations


There are a few ways such as:

  • Avoid reading the text directly. Better read around the text.

  • If you want your audience to focus on your speech rather than the presentation on board, you can implement a simple trick. Hit the “B” button. By doing that, you will darken the screen temporarily in a jiffy. Hit “B” again to go back to your presentation.

  • Use the arrow keys in the keyword to navigate smoothly among slides. The left mouse click also helps you to move to the next slide but using the arrow keys is a better practice. It also helps you to go back in a jiffy.

So that’s it then. Hope these tips come in handy for you. Ciao!

Sudipto Das

Sudipto writes technical content periodically for  and backs it up with extensive research and relevant examples. He's an avid reader and a tech enthusiast at the same time with a little bit of “Arsenal Football Club” thrown in as well. He's got a B.Tech in Electronics and Instrumentation.

Follow him on twitter @SudiptoDas1993

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