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I'm studying in a college in India. I have a course with a professor who is insisting that we submit our presentations in ppt format so that he can use them as his own ppts for his later batches.

Is the professor allowed to do this?

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  • what kind of presentation? Something your original work or he is asking to present someone else work ?
    – Mohaqiq
    Commented Oct 25, 2018 at 6:02
  • If you are doing this as homework and he finds good presentations which are better than his own slides, I would consider that a big win. Have you asked to be exempted from the possibility of having your slides repurposed?
    – tripleee
    Commented Oct 25, 2018 at 6:42
  • I ran a project for 200+ students and told them "a benefit for me is that I have 200+ researchers covering this topic, much better than just me doing google..." But I woulld not take their material...
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Oct 25, 2018 at 6:51
  • @MBK not original, but work of survey type... We need to read from several sources and making a good presentation from all of them...
    – hanugm
    Commented Oct 25, 2018 at 7:05
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    I totally agree that PPT sucks, but unfortunately this type of requirement is impossible to avoid, and seems tangential to your question anyway.
    – tripleee
    Commented Oct 25, 2018 at 8:03

1 Answer 1

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All learning activities you do as a student of University should, ideally, serve one purpose — to benefit your learning. Your assessment is only a way of measuring this learning. All requirements/restrictions for assessment should, ideally, serve one purspose — fairness of assessment.

I see no problem in lecturer taking samples of student's work to teach next cohort, as long as these samples are properly attributed and/or anonymised as appropriate. The lecturer should not, of course, pass students' work as his/her own — this is plagiarism. Samples should be clearly marked as such.

However, working with samples is lecturer's job and it does not justify the restrictions imposed on the format of your assessment.

I can understand a requirement to submit work in a format that lecturer can read — e.g. typeset not handwritten. I can understand why files need to be submitted using a universally accessible/open format, such as pdf. Forcing student into a proprietary format with no clear benefit to their learning is a bad practice. Forcing them into this format only because the lecturer does not know how to take a page out of a pdf document is very bad practice — it only demonstrates that the lecturer is incompetent with IT. The lecturer is not using their position of power and trust to the best.

Unfortunately, the world is not ideal, and in quite a few places educational system leaves to be desired. If you decide to file a formal complaint, assess your strategy and make sure it does not backfire you. It is a good idea to consult someone local — don't act simply based on advice from the Internet.

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    Tell me how you copy-paste selected content from a pdf - it is not IT incompetence in such cases but bad experience with the nature of the pdf format. But of course e.g. open office would do the same job.
    – OBu
    Commented Oct 25, 2018 at 20:33
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    "Forcing student into a proprietary format with no clear benefit to their learning is a bad practice." I'm inclined to agree, but I think the people who do it would argue that insistence on MS Office formats is so universal in graduate employment outside the university sector that becoming accustomed to producing those formats is a clear benefit to students' learning. Commented Jan 17 at 13:06
  • @DanielHatton Repel Commented Jan 17 at 13:24

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