Power points at University level should be banned


Any university teacher who does not harbour a painful recollection of a failed lecture is a liar.

There are a host of possible reasons for a lecture going wrong: a badly planned course, inadequate preparation, feeling uninspired on the day, disengaged students, a crowd that’s too big, a poorly designed auditorium. To this bulleted list of catastrophes comes


The physical face-to-face lecture is potentially a complex and open event where the students, the readings, the lecturer and a case-based or theoretical problem interact.

A PowerPoint presentation locks the lecture into a course that disregards any input other than the lecturer’s own idea of the lecture conceived the day before.

Not fit for teachers

As it turns out, PowerPoint has not empowered academia. The basic problem is that a lecturer isn’t intended to be selling bullet point knowledge to students, rather they should be making the students encounter problems.

Such a learning process is slow and arduous, and cannot be summed up neatly.

PowerPoint produces stupidity, which is why some, such as American statistician Edward Tufte has said it is “evil”.

The truth is that PowerPoints actually are hard to follow and if you miss one point you are often lost.

Free from PowerPoint

Free from while successfully banning Facebook and other users of social media in our master’s programme in philosophy and business at Copenhagen Business School, we have also recently banned teachers using PowerPoint.

Here we are in sync with the US armed forces, where Brigadier-General Herbert McMaster banned it because it was regarded as a poor tool for decision-making.

We couldn’t agree more, although we do allow lecturers to use it to show images and videos as well as quotes from primary authors.


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