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Clear and to the Point: 8 Psychological Principles for Compelling PowerPoint Presentations by [Kosslyn, Stephen M.]
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Clear and to the Point: 8 Psychological Principles for Compelling PowerPoint Presentations 1st , Kindle Edition

3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product description


Kosslyn puts PowerPoint users on notice. Read this book, and you will be enlightened... Kosslyn's thorough and engaging treatment is based on broad scientific literature, and on his extensive experience. Besides covering the myriad features that PowerPoint offers, Kosslyn provides great advice on how to connect with an audience, tell a story, work at the right level of information, and come up for air. (Lawrence W. Barsalou, Emory University, USA)

About the Author

Stephen M. Kosslyn is the former Chair of the Department of Psychology, currently Dean of Social Science and John Lindsley Professor of Psychology at Harvard University. A leading authority on the nature of visual mental imagery and visual communication, he has received numerous honors for his work in this field. His previous books include Image and Mind, Wet Mind: The New Cognitive Neuroscience (with Koenig), and Psychology: The Brain, the Person, the World (with Rosenberg).

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 4660 KB
  • Print Length: 234 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0195320697
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 1 edition (13 Aug. 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005254IOM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #872,669 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Professor Kosslyn must have sat through an awful lot of dreadful powerpoint presentations to come up with the material for this book.

Sadly we have all had to sit through most of the howlers he describes, but having read this book, I am not convinced there is anything ground breaking about his recommendations. This is stuff we have seen before and presented in a more informative way by the likes of Dave Paradi, Nancy Duarte and Garr Reynolds.

The other ideas in this book, such as 'The Principle of relevance - communication is most effective when neither too much nor too little information is presented' is more a statement of the blindly obvious than a deep psychological insight and is practically repeated in Principle 8 - people have a limited capacity to retain and to process information and so will not understand a message if too much information must be retained or processed.'

If you are looking to polish your powerpoint, there are better books on the market and no better way than to go along to your local toastmasters group, deliver presentations and read the feedback you are given.
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Format: Paperback
This book is exactly what I was looking for. It provides some rudementary lessons for formulating solid powerpoint presentations. It's also a great at taking it back to basics.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 3.5 out of 5 stars 22 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most helpful PowerPoint book that I've seen 30 Jan. 2010
By HaylArnold - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have recently been preparing to give presentations during academic job interviews and although I've given countless ppt presentations, I still felt ineffective in my use of the medium. I have tried reading other books (Why Most PowerPoint Presentations Suck, for example), but have found little use in them. This book, though based on visual processing research, is presented clearly and concisely. Kosslyn describes and gives clear examples of the 8 principles, but goes a step further by exemplifying them in the way the book is organized.

Certainly I was aware of some of the general "don'ts" in ppt such as not varying the font greatly throughout the presentation. However, this book helped me understand why I shouldn't do this. By knowing the why behind the rule, I can know use this knowledge more flexibly.

Some have indicated in their reviews that the information in this book was "basic." It may seem so, but given the fact that I have seen these 8 principles violated even in the most sophisticated and experienced presenters, I would invoke the old saying that common sense is not all that common. Perhaps people needed to understand why they should follow these principles to be convinced.

Finally, I appreciated Kosslyn's treatment of Tufte's argument that PowerPoint should never be used. Kosslyn makes that case that PowerPoint can be a powerful way to convey complex ideas, if used properly. Now that I know the 8 principles, I am confident that my presentations will be "clear and to the point."
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A gem, but a tough read 25 April 2009
By Easy Writer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a terrific book with excellent direction on how to create a PowerPoint presentation which works with, rather than against, the way the mind processes visual information. The concepts are terrific and supported by neuroscience research, and I've been using them to radically improve my own slides.

The 'Do' and 'Don't' slides are also very good to bring the concepts to life. There are many lists of "10 things to remember" with mixed value, but you can typically find many useful nuggets in these lists. The author has presented these concepts in live workshops and has worked out the flow of the book so it feels very comfortable and flows well.

The biggest drawback is the difficult writing style. The author is obviously a very educated and intelligent man, but this works against him because the reader needs things to be simplified much more. The 8 principles need snappier names to really be memorable for the reader (eg. "The Principle of Perceptual Organization" could be re-named "The Law of Chunking"), and the writing style is a bit flat and not persuasive or energetic. This is a shame, because the concepts really are excellent but readers may not recognize them as excellent when they are presented without pizazz.
3.0 out of 5 stars it is ok 31 Dec. 2013
By BELLA - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is ok, it is only one more textbook to help with another textbook, but it has good examples.
2.0 out of 5 stars Fuzzy and not to the point 17 Aug. 2011
By Analyst-1 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Too complex, not clear to the point
Font is hard to read
Format is hard to take in
Neither simplified nor particularly inviting to read its way too busy and therefore hard to find useful
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great book 8 Feb. 2008
By Camilo T. P. Santos - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book. I really liked the psicological approach and the appendix where the author goes with more detailed scientific description of how psicology interacts with communications and powerpoint.
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