Finding the Right Tool for the Job

A Look at Google’s Slides Q&A

Last week Google Slides released an exciting new feature called Q&A that allows audience members to ask questions during a presentation. It’s a great way to engage audience members by having them pose a question without having to interrupt the speaker. We’ve tried it, and it’s awesome!

Since this new feature makes Google Slides more interactive, some people are wondering if it’s the same as Pear Deck. Our perspective is that they’re really complimentary and educators and presenters will use both in different situations. Google Slides Q&A might be great for a presentation in front of a large audience where you want to solicit questions. Pear Deck is best for classroom instruction when you really want to get every student actively participating by asking questions and revealing responses for discussion.

Let’s Break it Down

When to Use Google Slides Q&A:

  • When presenting to a large group when you want audience members to be able to pose a question at any point during the presentation.
  • When you want audience members to be able to vote questions up or down so that you can answer the most popular question.

When to Use Pear Deck

  • When you want to ask questions that get students participating in many different ways, like drawing on an image, dragging pins on a map, graphing an equation, estimating numbers, and brainstorming ideas.
  • When you want to ask a specific question about a slide.
  • When you want to quickly switch between instruction and assessment and back again without missing a beat.
  • When you want to see exactly which students have joined your presentation and know who hasn’t answered a question.
  • When you want to able to toggle all answers anonymously onto the projector screen so students can learn from each other without putting anyone on the spot.
  • When you want to be able to review, grade, or give feedback on answers after the presentation has ended.

We hope we’ve helped show you situations where both Pear Deck and Slides Q&A are effective tools. Feeling comfortable and capable as a presenter (or teacher) is the most important part of delivering a captivating presentation. We’re so happy to see more platforms exploring interactive presentations to get everyone actively engaged, whether it’s in a classroom or professional setting.