Category Archives: Research
I’m at eLearn 2012 this week doing a presentation on my PowerPoint research.
Here is an abstract of the presentation, the slides, and a downloadable pre-print of the paper.
Abstract. How can we best use PowerPoint? Three streams of research provide answers: (1) surveys provide student and faculty perceptions, (2) expert presenters give their opinion, and (3) cognitive scientists conduct focused perceptual experiments. I expand on this research by testing existing research findings against actual conference presentations. My C# software automatically analyzes 166 slide presentations to generate numeric slide characteristics. A regression analysis then correlates these characteristics with audience ratings and social media impact. The results generally support existing research, but have two surprising outcomes: (1) only certain types of images generate positive session ratings, (2) high words counts lead to improved social media impact.
PDF Download: PowerPoint’s Impact on Conference Ratings and Social Media Likes
I worked with my good friends Joan Marques and Satinder Dhiman to put together a short article with some of the things we’ve learned doing assessment at Woodbury. It was a short article, and more of a reflection than a qual/quant study. Even so, I think that it provides a nice follow-up to the article I wrote with Joan last year.
This article presents two contrasting assessment programs implemented at a small School of Business in the Los Angeles area. The program for the undergraduate degree, which includes four majors, relies upon tight coordination and a centralized assessment group, while the graduate program, an MBA, relies upon individual courses as the key building blocks of the assessment program. This article shows ways in which pre- and post-tests, nationally normed instruments, longitudinal tracking, and cross-sectional analysis can be used to demonstrate effective assessment of learning in each program. Lastly, the article concludes by discussing ways to continually continuously improve a curriculum.
I was happy to see my latest renewal letter from Woodbury for the next academic year.
In looking back at the last several years, I feel that I’ve been focusing too much on service. While I have had several publications, most are in the area of assessment (not my primary interest!).
I’ve been work on PowerPoint research, but have had difficulty getting the right conference to showcase it. Using an automated analysis approach has yielded what I think are some good results, but it doesn’t fall neatly into the IS community mainstream.
For next year, my priority is going to be to turn the my PowerPoint research into several journal articles. I’m hopeful that this summer will result in a number of useful datasets that can be converted into some good findings. Already, I’ve been able to download and partially process around 20,000 PowerPoint files, and I’m hopeful that with a few weeks of work, that I’ll be able to do some basic statistical analysis.
Joan Marques and I just had our article published by the Journal of Education for Business (Volume 87, Issue 4, 2012). It’s not my normal line of research, but Joan and I have been working on assessment for Woodbury, and thought that we were doing interesting work enough to publish. The paper discusses the positive and constructive way we implemented our assurance of learning (AoL) program.
Implementing Mission-Driven Assurance of Learning: Improving Performance Through Constructive Collaboration. DOI:10.1080/08832323.2011.593588
Joan Marques & Nathan GarrettAssurance of Learning (AoL) practices can be implemented in a variety of ways, as long as they are geared toward business schools’ missions and curricula. The authors first address the purpose of implementing AoL, and briefly evaluate the ongoing debate about the pros and cons of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business’s policies regarding AoL procedures in business schools. The authors then report how a small-sized, private business school implemented the AoL process in its bachelor of business administration program in a manner that satisfies accreditation requirements without losing its institutional or disciplinary distinctiveness. The authors end with lessons learned about how an assessment program can satisfy accountability needs while still encouraging flexibility and innovation.