Thinking visually

In my Business Communication class, I require students to give two (sometimes more) presentations using visuals… without words! Only graphs.

This forces students not to depend on powerpoint as a script and to rediscover -I hope- the power of images.

Logic+Emotion makes the point:

Effective communication is everyone’s job—whether you are trying to sell in a concept or convince a client. Visual Thinking can help us take in complex information and synthesize it into something meaningful. In an increasingly fragmented and cluttered world, simple imagery, metaphors and mindmaps can get people to understand the abstract and make your ideas tangible.

The stock market: How bad is it?

On this chart each block represents a year and each column represents a range of return on the S&P index. Over on the right side are those lucky years where the index has soared upward from 50-60%. In the middle are the more typical years, where the market has risen less than 10%.

That little box on the far left? Yeah, that’s this year.

via Daily Kos.

Illustrating excess

Chris Jordan

gives dramatic life to statistics of US consumption. Often-heard factoids like “We use 2 million plastic bottles every 5 minutes” become a chilling sea of plastic that stretches beyond our horizon. (TED)

Another excellent example of presenting without bullet points nor words. Just show (visually) what you are talking about.