org change & design group project done, part II...the presentation
The presentation aspect of this group project was technically ungraded, but required, and if you personally did a shitty job (like not showing up) he'd mark you down for it. The way the group project grading worked is that it was worth 100 points, and only the paper was graded, but then individual grades were adjusted up, down or not at all. Each member of the team was asked to rank the other members 1 through 5 (1 = best, 5 = worst), and the people with the lowest and highest scores were potentially marked up or down. If everyone did equal work (like you wanted to give 4 people 1s and a crappy person a 5) that was taken into consideration and the 4 would get the same grade and the crappy person would get a lower grade. In our group, there was a definite split between the top three and the lower three. I reckon that I will get a bonus, two will just get the regular grade, and three will get lower grades. An A paper will net me 108 points, the other two will get 100 points, and probably the other three will get 85 points. It's all very complicated, this grading thing.
So about the actual presentation...prof gave us two rules: don't recite the paper, and do something interesting. We had a 30 minute block of time. So our idea (not mine...someone else actually contributed! I was so happy.) was to give a standard 6-section overview presentation (each member had a few slides) and then split the class in half and pit them against each other in a Jeopardy-like game...the winning group would get first choice of donuts. In my opinion, the key to a successful presentation is always the food. So, the fella who suggested the idea make a game board with velcro notecards and it was all very cute. Each group member had to send him two questions...and of course people were still giving him questions right before the presentation. Losers.
Anyway, everyone had to give me the text for their slides. I refuse to let other people create the presentation, because I swear, 98% of students can't make a PowerPoint presentation to save their lives. 200 words in 10pt light blue text on a dark blue background with animated clip art that you then read word for word IS NOT A GOOD PRESENTATION. Now, I'm not the world's greatest presentation maker, nor is it something I do in my job (I don't do anything with color, really, in my job), but I know presentation theory and by god I can use it. So I do. Simple, clean slides with 18-24pt dark text on light backgrounds, highlighting key points, blah blah.
So of course I get "slide text" in paragraph form. Whatever. I made it into a presentation. It worked. I carried it on my USB keychain flash drive
and felt all cool...
...until one of our group members decided the presentation was optional, and didn't show up. AT ALL. Luckily, her contribution was crappy to begin with, so one of the good guys pinch hit and all was well. Then, we started the Jeopardy game and a couple people asked questions about the stuff we said in the presentation, we got onto a tangent, never played the game, gave out the donuts anyway and I felt so bad for the guy who took the time to make the game board!
Then the next group got up to do their presentation, and THEY HAD NO SLIDES. How can you do a presentation without slides? Ok sure, if you're a great speaker you can, but a 6-person presentation about a corporation (UPS, in their case. We did Agilent's Life Science/Chemical Analysis business.)? It was terrible. Other groups have done that as well, the no slides thing. But I don't get it. Oh well, it just made us look better.