MS PowerPoint is bad for brains

    Researchers at the Australian University of New South Wales have found that presentations made with PowerPoint can be hazardous to health.

    The combination of audio and visual information is a typical example of a presentation made in PowerPoint. Such slide shows make it difficult to capture information, since people cannot perceive a large amount of audio and visual material - of course, a person understands both of them, but only separately.

    Professor John Sweller (John Sweller) says that the human brain is not able to perceive such information for more than a few seconds ("theory of cognitive load"). An oral commentary explaining the diagrams is perceived normally, but if the words are accompanied by printed text, then the person cannot adequately perceive the presentation material.

    The professor’s work can be downloaded from here in PDF format.

    PS: Sweller is not the first to oppose PowerPoint. In 2003, Edward Tufte, a professor at Yale University, also wrote about the dangers of PP in his book Cognitive Style of Powerpoint: Pitching Out Corrupts Within.

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