Lightning talk

Students need to give a short presentation, with a limited number of slides and a fixed amount of time for each slide. It is most suitable as a homework assignment.
  • Individual
  • Pairs
  • Small groups (3-10)
  • 10-30 minutes
  • 30-60 minutes
  • Activating prior knowledge
  • Assessment
  • Discussion
  • Practicing academic skills
  • Understand
  • Apply

When to use it?

  • When you want students to prepare a certain topic.
  • When the content can be presented using visual media, however, it is not limited to that.
  • When the topics can be presented in a short period of time.

Activity instructions


  • Figure out the theme(s) that can be presented in a short time. The theme should support visual storytelling.
  • Decide if it will be an individual or a small group assignment.
  • Decide how to deal with the time: (1) Set a timer for each slide in the PowerPoint settings or (2) keep track of the time by yourself (or ask students to do that).

Activity steps

  1. Explain the task
    Explain the task to the students and emphasise the expectations and format of the presentation: How many slides should there be and how much time is given for each slide? The slides should be very simplistic (one image or a couple of words). You can assign the task to individuals or small groups.
  2. Collect the slides
    Organise a class of presentations. Before class, collect everyone's slides.
  3. Present
    Let the students present.
  4. Discuss
    A discussion after the presentation might be valuable to let students ask questions and explain what was not understood.

Tips for implementation & variation

  • Online teaching: If needed, the presentation groups can prepare in breakout rooms. The presentations can take place in the main room of the video lecture tool.
  • It can also be used by yourself when you want to introduce a new concept or topic.
  • Adjust the requirements for the number of slides and time for each of them according to the broadness of the topic.

Supporting tools