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Do Power Point Presentations Really Work?

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.393.1 - 6.393.6

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Jr., Richard Mines

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2793

Do PowerPoint Presentations Really Work?

Richard O. Mines, Jr. Mercer University


The use of PowerPoint presentations to enhance lectures and improve learning is discussed in this paper. PowerPoint presentations were used throughout the semester in a required undergraduate course in Environmental Engineering at Mercer University to enhance student interest and hopefully improve student performance. Handouts of the PowerPoint slides were given to each student at the beginning of each class. Statistical analysis using the analysis of variance (ANOVA) was performed on student’s final grades when the course was taught in a traditional lecture format versus using the PowerPoint presentations for comparison. The use of PowerPoint presentations did not enhance overall student grades compared to the traditional lecture format.

I. Introduction

In recent years, the public, industry, and legislatures have increasingly scrutinized the university educational systems. The United States Accreditation Board Engineering and Technology (ABET) has established engineering Criteria 2000 for to make engineering schools accountable for improving communication skills, teaming skills, lifelong learning skills, and awareness of global and societal issues. In addition to those skills, engineering graduates must have a firm knowledge of math, science, and engineering fundamentals. The primary impetus for this change was to improve the overall quality of engineering education. Felder and Brent1 discussed this reformation in higher education. They suggested that it will take more than faculty development to have a lasting reform and that administrators must modify the faculty incentive and reward system by making educational scholarship and disciplinary scholarship comparable in the promotion and tenure process.

The use of multimedia presentations and the Internet has been heralded as one method to enhance learning. Christensen and Barrett2 described how the Internet was used to distribute a full range of course materials to enhance off-campus education at the University of South Florida. The use of computers and commercially available software was discussed by Ferguson3 to increase understanding and supplement lectures. Juriasingani et al.4 reported on the use of CD-ROM PowerPoint based presentations to illustrate the installation of sewers and water mains. The authors reported that students

"Proceedings of the 2001 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright 2001 American Society for Engineering Education"

Mines, J. R. (2001, June), Do Power Point Presentations Really Work? Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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