SlideShare

What is it?

Share your presentations, documents and pdf files with all internet users, or privately with just your invited audience. You can also share professional and business videos and webinars (video-based presentations), though SlideShare’s strapline Present Yourself serves to differentiate its intended professional audience from YouTube’s anything-goes approach.

SlideShare can be used as a tool for promoting your ideas and for growing your professional network – and it’s free. And according to the SlideShare site, it has around 25 million visitors every month.

What does it look like?

Using the taxonomy of topics or the free-text search box, you can quickly find presentations that might be of interest. For instance, searching on ‘e-learning’ will produce thousands of returns. Increasing the number of search terms used, however, for instance, ‘e-learning adults’, will narrow search returns to several hundred.

Each presentation shows a thumbnail of the opening slide, the title of the presentation, its provenance and search tags (metadata).

Clicking on the thumbnail will take you to the presentation, which can be viewed in a window within the page, or full screen.

As with many sharing sites, all resources have a unique web address (URL) which can be ‘pushed’ to your friends and colleagues in a variety of ways: email, Facebook, Twitter, Buzz, etc..

Users’ feedback appears below the watch window, and below this is space for the presenter’s commentary – though this often simply duplicates the text from the slides

Where in the learner’s journey are you likely to come across it?

Teaching and learning

  • distance learning
  • as a learning aid
  • to explore and understand a central theme
  • teaching and learning with technology

Assessment

  • portfolio building
  • reflective practice
  • feedback

How can teachers, trainers & learners use it?

Learning how to present ideas concisely and effectively to teachers and peers begins with ‘show and tell’ in early-years classes and continues throughout a learner’s education. If technology is used to accompany a learner’s presentation then SlideShare can add value in two distinct ways.

Critical review

As with other sharing technologies discussed in this site, the act of sharing a piece of work with others, whether they be an invited audience or the general public, sharpens learners’ thinking and encourages them to raise their aspirations.

In using SlideShare for critical review, learners can receive direct feedback not just from the teacher, but from all users with permission to view the presentation. This not only has the potential to develop the presenter, but also their peers who must carefully articulate their considered opinions. And by reviewing the collected commentaries, the teacher can also gauge how well s/he prepared them for the task.

Embeded widgets

If a learner is presenting their work in a web page, wiki or blog, they can easily add a presentation/slide show by embedding a Blog Sidebar Widget opening up further possibilities for ambitious projects with a professional edge.

Contests

Learners can use the many thousands of presentations for research and critical evaluation as they develop their own style. The contests section of the site, showcasing work by some of the ‘world’s best presenters’ is also invaluable.

What impact can it have on learning?

SlideShare is a resource to publish ideas and can help learners develop a greater critical awareness of their own work. In giving feedback on the work of others, learners can also improve their ability to make judgements and, of course, develop their literacy skills.

At its best it will… (where appropriate – help for judging good or better)

At its best, SlideShare will be used to motivate learners to produce work of a very high standard: innovative, clear and effectively communicating the messages. Learners will also become informed and articulate critics.

At its worst it will… (where appropriate – help for judging satisfactory or worse)

At its worst, learners may plagiarise the work of others and provide feedback which is insufficiently considered, enlightening or respectful.

What are the safeguarding implications?

As will all websites in which users upload their own content, SlideShare can contain material that is not appropriate for young learners. Users can easily report anything they feel is inappropriate and in practice there is little to be found that is in anyway offensive.

If learners publish their work to the general public they will expose themselves to potentially inappropriate comments. With the opportunity for conversational dialogue, the threat of ‘grooming’ is ever-present, though, again, this can easily be reported by the well-prepared learner.

Find out more

For which CIF evaluative statements could it generate evidence?

A1        How well do learners achieve and enjoy their learning?

A1a.3   learners’ work meets or exceeds the requirements of the qualifications, learning goals or employment

A1b.1   learners develop personal and social skills, including, as appropriate, spiritual, moral and cultural aspects

A1b.2   learners enjoy learning and make progress relative to their prior attainment and potential

A1b.3   learners develop the literacy, numeracy, language and key skills required to complete their programmes and progress.

A2        How well do learners improve their economic and social well-being through learning and development?

A2.2     learners increase their employability

A3        How safe do learners feel?

A3.1     learners use safe working practices in learning and at work

B1        How effectively do teaching, training and assessment support learning and development?

B1.2     interesting and appropriate teaching and learning methods and resources inspire and challenge all learners and enable them to extend their knowledge, skills and understanding

B1.3     technology is used effectively to promote and support learning, where appropriate

B1.6     learners receive constructive feedback on their progress and how they might improve

B1.8     learning, teaching, training and assessment promote equality and recognise diversity.

C3        How effectively does the provider promote the safeguarding of learners?

C3.3     safeguarding is prioritised

C4        How effectively does the provider   actively promote equality and diversity, tackle discrimination and narrow the achievement gap?

C4.1     manages equality and diversity, particularly disability, gender and race, and actively promotes equality and diversity among staff, learners, employers, parents and other partners

C4.2     assesses the impact of its work in relation to equality and diversity and takes appropriate action in response to its findings

C4.4     makes sure that all learners and staff are protected from harassment, bullying and discrimination, including those based with employers and at other sites external to the providers

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