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Better Than Bullet Points: Creating Engaging e-Learning with PowerPoint Paperback – January 9, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-0787992453 ISBN-10: 0787992453

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Pfeiffer (January 9, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0787992453
  • ISBN-13: 978-0787992453
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 7.7 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #722,296 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Learn to leverage Powerpoint® to create superior training programs!

Better Than Bullet Points offers a practical guide for tapping into the force of PowerPoint and PowerPoint-based authoring tools (such as Articulate® or Adobe Presenter®) to create effective and memorable e-learning programs. Perfect for front-line trainers as well as instructional designers, this book includes step-by-step instructions and exercises for creating successful, compelling learning interactions. Better Than Bullet Points offers a wealth of information for harnessing the powerful features of PowerPoint, including everything from animation to tracking tools.

Praise for Better Than Bullet Points

"Rather than purchasing expensive software, dedicated for e-learning, Better Than Bullet Points advocates using a tool that most of us already have, saving time and money without the cost of re-training. The benefits of combining PowerPoint and proven instructional design principles are refreshing: a clearer message and targeted training that can stand on its own."
—Diane D. Chapman, teaching assistant professor and director, Training and Development Online Program, Department of Adult & Higher Education, North Carolina State University

"Jane Bozarth again shows us how to maximize resources and time while getting results. In her typical straight-shooting style, the author demonstrates that quality e-learning comes from good design, not expensive tools and software. Our own organization has achieved great success with her common-sense approaches—and now yours can, too."
—Thom Wright, director, North Carolina Office of State Personnel

"PowerPoint ranks very high in our 'top 100 tools for learning.' It is a powerful tool yet it is not exploited as much as it could be for learning purposes. This book will show you how to get the most out of it."
—Jane Hart, Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies

"Jane Bozarth's guide Better Than Bullet Points explains the power of graphic choices, treatments, hotspots, and hyperlinks. She suggests ways to replicate games and simulations, to handle multimedia files, and to create a good GUI using the Slide Master. Readers will see how to blend their e-learning with other training systems and make it available

to all their learners."
—Karen Hyder, online speaker coach and event producer, The eLearning Guild

About the Author

The Author

Jane Bozarth is e-learning coordinator for the central personnel office for North Carolina State government. A popular conference presenter, she also reviews books for Training magazine's monthly "In Print" column. She is the author of e-Learning Solutions on a Shoestring also from Pfeiffer.


More About the Author

A decade ago I moved from the world of traditional instruction to designing and facilitating both asychronous and synchronous training. Now that technology -- and learner access to it -- has finally caught up with possibilities, my interests have expanded to the world of social media tools to support and extend the work of the workplace training practitioner.

I have an M.Ed. in Training & Development/Technology in Training and a doctorate in Adult Education. (My dissertation, on workplace social learning/communities of practice, is available free via a Google search). I enjoy writing, and in addition to my books I was, for 10 years, a member of "Training Magazine"'s book review team and now write book reviews and a monthly column, "Nuts and Bolts" for the eLearning Guild's online "Learning Solutions Magazine".

You can find me "live" most anytime on Twitter @janebozarth and almost always on Thursday evenings as one of the moderators of the popular #lrnchat sessions. My Twitter profile describes me as a feral learner, positive deviant, and World's Oldest Millenial.

I also drive too fast.

Customer Reviews

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The book has a nice mix of theory and practical advice and examples.
M. Haley
This is a great book for the trainer who needs to create a quality rapid elearning product but doesn't have the time or budget for expensive tools.
Amazon Customer
Highly recommended for anyone who wants to get their first elearning program right the time.
Daniel Paulk

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By DapperDan on January 11, 2008
Format: Paperback
WHY did it take so long for someone to write this book? Bozarth, the author of "Elearning on a Shoestring", is back with her common-sense approach to creating great online learning. As she notes time and time again, no tool will take static content and magically transform it into engaging training: that will always require effort, creativity, and design skill. The examples of effective treatments will rock those who have been exposed only to bullet-based presentations, and there is an excellent passage, with examples, of transforming (not just converting) classroom programs to engaging elearning courses. While this isn't a 'how to use PowerPoint' book, the CD does include some tutorials (narrated by the author) for complex operations.

I have been to several workshops that promised to teach me to use PowerPoint for elearning, only to spend hours inserting clip art and making text fly. This book shows how to use it to create LEARNING.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Robert H. Welton on February 10, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I agree with everything the other reviewers have said to date. This well-written book (lots of active voice) is useful to anyone involved in training; chapter 2 takes Bloom's taxonomy to a very realtistc and pragmatic level that guides the reader to the most appropriate learning activities. I just finished a master program in distance education and I wish I had had this book in school. Bozarth's interpretations of Roger Mayer's principles of multimedia made more sense to me now than when I read Mayer's book in grad school. Not at all overly academic; very application-based on what most of us learned in school, but needed help in using the theories. Highly recommended.
Margaret Driscoll's "Web-Based Training: Designing e-Learning Experiences" with CD-ROM would make a great companion book to this one for anyone creating e-learning in a variety of delivery formats.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Kristen on November 25, 2008
Format: Paperback
I am working for a start-up company designing and helping to produce e-learning classes for their software product. Although I use another authoring product, Articulate, I wanted to see what one could do with just PowerPoint. I think the book promises a bit more than it delivers, although it had some good ideas. However, some of the suggestions based on current research were not fully explained or made clear. I found that I would have to go to the original research to fully understand her abbreviated summary. Also, some of her graphics are wrong. She shows a before and after screen and they are basically the same (figures 3.12/3.13 and figures 4.11/4.12). Oops! This happens twice in the book and you have to wonder who did the proofing.

Some of the interactive features that you can build using PPT are unfortunately not relevant because they are not supported by Flash. She says to keep watching for this feature. This was one of the things I was most interested in and somewhat of a dissappointment.

I think this book could have been a lot better, although it does contain some good information. However, it feels like some of her content was thrown in without enough explanation. If you are a beginner, you might need clarification from other sources.

So, I would definitely recommend reading this book, but I'm not sure I would recommend buying this book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Brenda Levya-Gardner on January 16, 2008
Format: Paperback
This is a great book for people who have a knowledge of basic Powerpoint tools but want to take it to the next step in creating e-learning. It's easy-to-understand and follow and keeps driving home the point, "It's the design, not the software." People who may feel intimidated by e-learning design and development can use the tutorials and how-to's in the book to create quick, easy and effective e-learning modules. I received an advance copy and was able to use the principles in a graduate class I taught in the Fall. Students were amazed at what can be done with Powerpoint for e-learning purposes and were able to follow the step-by-step instructions. Their assignments reflected their ability to use the principles and guidance in the book, and I will be requiring the book for my upcoming graduate classes this Summer and Fall. The author is obviously knowledgeable, but more importantly, able to "speak" to readers less experienced. I recommend the book highly and also the resources on the author's website, [...].
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By B. Barham on January 11, 2008
Format: Paperback
Better Than Bullet Points: Creating Engaging e-Learning with PowerPoint

I would like to commend Ms. Bozarth and THANK HER for writing this book. The problem with virtually all (just my opinion here) user manuals for computer software programs is that they waste waaay too many words on the technical aspects and far too few words on just putting the program to practical use for the overworked employee who just wants to know how to do all the cool things these programs are designed to do. There are so many software programs that are severely underutilized because the material is presented in such complicated terminology that one who doesn't have a lot of time to read and analyze will quickly lose interest in trying to learn to apply certain program aspects that are not nearly as complicated to use as the user manual instructions present them. I have read nearly a third of the book and find it very helpful already...but then I have loved the possibilities of PowerPoint (and many other programs I have taken) ever since I took the first 1 day training session at NCSU's Computer Training Unit. This book will be invaluable to me in helping me get the most out of PowerPoint in the least amount of time.
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