Bala Iyer

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New way to prepare for a class

Posted by Bala Iyer on Wed, Feb 22, 2012 @ 04:52 PM

I had a very interesting experience preparing a couple of new topics for my graduate class discussions. The two topics were Professional Digital Strategy and Gamification of Business.  In both cases, after I decided to pursue it, I created a Powerpoint presentation and put it on SlideShare. I then let my Twitter followers know that I did that. Later I identified a few influencers on Twitter and told them about it. These influencers had a large following on social media and they brought my presentation to the attention of their followers. I also made sure that I used tags on SlideShare.
Readers who viewed the presentation sent their comments to me via email or left it as feedback on SlideShare. Each response led to revisions of my content. Since my presentations dealt with technology related topics, I had responses from technology vendors (after my presentations reached a critical mass of audience of over 1000 views). In the case of my presentation on Digital Strategy, I was able to use some of the responders themselves as examples to make my point. My presentation on gamification has been viewed over 1800 times so far and revised 25 times in a week! Before I presented Digital Strategy to students, I had over 1800 people view and propose changes to my presentation. In many instances, suggestions came from experts in the field. In earlier times, I would write a paper and present that in a conference or journal to get feedback and in many cases classroom presentations were not subject to such rigor.
Availability of social media platforms like Twitter and SlideShare have altered the landscape dramatically. I find the engagement and interaction encouraged by these platforms to be very rewarding. Faculty get to signal to the world about what they are doing within their classrooms. Students get material that has been qualified by many experts. The community benefits by the sharing of the content. In the digital age, relevance and reputation is highly influenced by the use of social platforms to prepare for sessions. What has been your experience? Do you see other benefits or drawbacks to this approach?

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