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ViP's Origins

Virtual-i Presenter (ViP) was originally invented by Dr. Tom Cochrane as an educational tool to help students and lecturers improve oral presentation skills. The idea behind ViP first developed when he was confronted with the fact that there were little opportunities for students in his large engineering classes to give oral presentations and receive feedback. To help his students improve their presentation skills, Tom used his programming skills and developed a beta version of ViP to:

  • allow users to record their presentations with their computers and a webcam
  • provide them a way to obtain peer feedback through an evaluation tool
  • keep it simple...
  • allow users to view themselves present is the key:

    "self awareness motivates improvement"

And so the concept of ViP was born. Software for presenters to use for recording, evaluating and improving presentations. After preliminary trials, Tom went to work on the software with the help of another developer (Joe Zhou - former Canterbury graduate student), and used his students to trial early prototypes when they were preparing for their upcoming presentations.

Although ViP originated in the classroom environment, it can be used to record and critique any PowerPoint Presentation. Since its invention, the ViP software has been requested for a variety of other uses including:

  • conference presentations
  • consulting presentations and reporting
  • practicing for job interviews
  • administration presentations
  • and multiple other uses...

Case Studies

Cochrane, T.A. and O'Donogue, M. (2008). Improving oral presentation skills of engineering students with the Virtual-i Presenter (ViP) program. Proceedings of the 2008 Australasian Association for Engineerng Education (AAEE) Conference. Yeppoon, Australia.

Cochrane, T.A. (2009). Enhancing oral presentation skills of engineering students: Technology to the rescue with the Virtual-i Presenter (ViP). American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE) conference, Austin, Texas.

Useful Resources

Helpful links to giving oral presentations:

Tom Cochrane

Virtual-i Presenter Inventor


Senior Lecturer (US Assoc. Professor), University of Canterbury, New Zealand.

Tom Cochrane

Teaching and Research Interests

Hydrology, Water Resources Engineering, GIS modeling, Soil and Water Conservation

Message from Tom:

"I hope Virtual-i Presenter can help you improve your presentations, as it helped me and my students. I would love to hear any feedback from your as I'm always looking for ways to improve the software." - Tom Cochrane, ViP Inventor

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