'I'm Ambivalent About It' the Dilemmas of PowerPoint

Andrea Hill, University of Washington Tacoma
Tammi Arford
Amy Lubitow
Leandra M. Smollin


The increasing ubiquity of PowerPoint in the university classroom raises complex questions about pedagogy and the creation of dynamic and effective learning environments. Though much of the sociological teaching literature has focused on engagement and active learning, very little of this work has addressed the presence of PowerPoint in sociology classrooms. Teaching sociology requires discussion, critical thinking, and debate—characteristics many critics argue are at odds with PowerPoint's unique presentation style. Utilizing survey data from faculty and students at a private university, this research explores PowerPoint usage and the many ways it influences the learning environment of the sociology classroom.