- Paperback: 32 pages
- Publisher: Graphics Pr; 2 edition (2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0961392169
- ISBN-13: 978-0961392161
- Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.1 x 10.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 76 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #134,514 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Cognitive Style of PowerPoint: Pitching Out Corrupts Within, Second Edition 2nd Edition
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Tufte is responsible for changing how I teach. I used to like lecture with PowerPoint notes (or, when I got more advanced, notes written in the Beamer class of LaTeX). It always bothered me that my students thought the class was just the slides on the screen and my talking or not was irrelevant. I was even more disturbed on tests when there was no understanding.
My problem wasn't so much the medium but my use of it, and that is Tufte's point about PowerPoint. It does make a fine support. It can show simple diagrams, unfamiliar terms, and pictures.
What it does NOT do is present dense information well. This is better absorbed by reading or by doing something. And (in my profession) what student really enjoys listening to the teacher summarize information that the student could read and summarize himself. Much better to have a guided activity that reviews or uses the information.
Now I do recognize that Tufte's focus was not on education. But the principle is the same: talks are for summaries. For detailed information I need to be able to read, re-read, go back, flip forward, and take notes. In a talk, a summary of the highlights or a plan of action is best because this can actually be absorbed.
However, before you buy this, realize that this volume is also a chapter in Tufte's latest full-sized design book, Beautiful Evidence. If, like me, you enjoy having Tufte's works on your shelves, then this excerpted edition is of little use.