I had nice conversations with several people following my presentation on podcasting today, but one of the most thought provoking was with Dr. Terence Cavanaugh of the University of North Florida. We discussed the importance of instructors including links to additional resources in multimedia presentations that are posted online.

Going beyond just source citations, external links to content in an online presentation or a blog post allow others to “drill out” in the content, to use the parlance of Jonathan Levy who addressed eLearn participants yesterday.

By including external links to additional content, online presentations can become more than just “sustaining technology” which is a rebroadcast of previously shared visual information. When designing any type of instructional materials, I think it is a great idea for teachers to intentionally add worthwhile web links to their presentations. This gives students a compelling reason to access the online presentations, because they become jumping off points to additional content that may be deeper on ancillary to the main ideas of the presentation.

Hopefully I modeled this pedagogy well in my presentation today. I love the S5 tool for web-based presentations for this precise reason. The web is the delivery vehicle for my content, and it makes sense to use a presentation format that is very clean, speedy, accessible, and web-friendly.

Plus, S5 has the added bonus of not being a Microsoft product! Patricia McGee of The University of Texas at San Antonio in her presentation today mentioned execs proposing the radical idea of NOT using Microsoft PowerPoint for presentations… now that is thinking differently. But why not? S5 is free / open source after all! 🙂

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One Response to Linking in online presentations

  1. Eric Meyer says:

    In fact, S5 is explicitly in the Public Domain as of v1.1 (see the FAQ for details).

    Glad to hear you like S5! I’m hoping to move it to a new version number in the near future; the plan is to add some features that would make it really attractive in an academic environment. I just have to find the time…

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