How to Create Compelling, Memorable Lectures with Microsoft PowerPoint Web App

Meet Kevin, an undergrad at a large university in Oregon. Kevin lives on campus and uses his laptop everywhere from the library to his dorm, to the hallway outside the classroom. And he never goes anywhere without his smart phone, which he checks before, during, and after class. Kevin’s university provides Live@EDU for all its students and staff. With these great tools, he can do his homework, stay on top of his social life, and have non-stop access to all of his files. And the fact that it’s free? Bonus.

This semester, Kevin’s course load will help illustrate each of the tools within Live@EDU, their features, and the many ways the Microsoft Office Web Apps make life easier for both students and faculty. 

PowerPoint is a presentation application that helps illustrate your ideas and inform your audience. The use of visual aids help guide your listeners through your arguments and frame the key messages. And with all the capabilities for creating custom presentations, PowerPoint is helpful in a variety of scenarios.

Kevin’s Class: Organizational Behaviour

Assignment: Create a live experiment on fellow classmates on the Observer-Expectancy Theory

Business classes used to be about reading textbooks and taking tests, but Kevin’s organizational behaviour professor likes to create the environment he's teaching. In order to make the content and concepts more interesting, classwork evolves around challenges, teamwork, and games.

In this particular challenge or project, Kevin has to work with a team to generate a live example of the Observer-Expectancy effect with the members of the class. In order to demonstrate the concept, the team will divide the class into the test group and the control group. The experiment will be executed using a series of photographs, and the control group will be told to record any details on what they see, and the test group will be told to record what they see, and note whether or not they see any animal shapes in the pictures.

The team will execute the experiment, compile and share the results, present the background information on the theory, and then provide a study guide for the class.

This is very different from traditional teaching approaches where the professor simply lectures the class. In order for the experiment to work, the professor must collaborate privately with each group in order to help them with their projects. This is where the Live@EDU workspace makes life easy.

The Microsoft PowerPoint Web App will be the tool of choice for this project. Here is how Kevin and his group use PowerPoint to prepare for their presentation.

For the experiment to work, the control and test groups need to be given separate sets of information. The team has decided to create separate presentations to explain the rules for each group, and then move to a new PowerPoint presentation to show the images.

How to Organize with PowerPoint Slides

PowerPoint presentations are created by adding and editing individual slides.

Slides can display text, graphics, or images, and create a great tool to begin organizing your thoughts.

Screenshot of PowerPoint Web App

Group projects require collaboration, and because the professor is working with each of the teams privately in effort to surprise the rest of the soon-to-be-subjects students, sharing files are a saving grace when executing a highly collaborative project. Instead of having to meet in person and dodge people’s work, sports, and social schedules, each of the team members can add their contribution to the presentation when they have time. The professor can view all the group progress and provide feedback from home. He can also see who made each contribution which helps him grade each team member individually.

How to Share and Collaborate

If you share the file, others will be able to view and/or edit your work from wherever they are. Sharing allows you to select who can access the files to view them, and who can contribute, or edit the files.

Screenshot of PowerPoint Web App

The experiment will occur around a series of images, and each member of the control and test group will be—in theory—looking for different things. Placing images into the slides is simple. The group will create a series of 6 images – one per slide, so each member of the audience can focus on it and make notes on what they see.

How to Add Images

Within the text space, you are able to add images and graphics. Click on the icon of what you would like to insert, and the PowerPoint Web App will load an Insert options menu box allowing you to select the image from your computer.

This is what Kevin’s group will use to display the images for the class experiment.

Screenshot of PowerPoint Web App

Once the control and test group have viewed the images, made their notes, and Kevin’s group has compiled the data and proven the theory that individuals will more likely see what they are told they will likely see—the Observer-Expectant theory—the team will illustrate some of the background. SmartArt diagrams will help display the characteristics, facts, and information behind the theory.

How to Add Notes

The notes section is below the slide area, and unlike the slide, this has unlimited space and can be an excellent resource for any supporting information you might need for your presentation. By typing in this section, all your information will be captured. When in presentation mode, your viewers will not see this content.

Screenshot of PowerPoint Web App

All the work Kevin’s team does is saved to the SkyDrive, so that everyone can work off the most recent version. This means that no one needs to email the file back and forth. And when it comes time to give the presentation, the team can run it directly off the Web through a browser—no need for the PowerPoint software to be installed on anyone’s computer. No longer does anyone have to worry about bringing the file to class—the file is always accessible with any internet connection.

How to View as a Slide Show from the Web

The Web App gives you an interface to edit your presentation and add content, and the Slide Show view provides the format to present your work without showing the editing functionality.

Screenshot of PowerPoint Web App

All of this is possible with the Microsoft PowerPoint Web App, and with this tool, the group can create a successful experiment to present to the class. The software version of PowerPoint is more powerful and has many more features and capabilities than its Web App counterpart. Here are some great functionalities of the software version:

  • Embedding video and audio
  • Creating interactive polls your audience can answer, and having results display in your file
  • Adding animations
  • Broadcasting ability for viewers in other locations to attend presentations remotely

To learn more about what you can do with the software version, click here.

Want to share this with your students? Click here to find this information in an email template you can send to others, or share the link directly.

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