There is really no substitute for an outstanding guest speaker. You know – the one that really understands and responds to what you need, is entertaining, arrives regardless of weather and will pay for his/her own travel expenses.
The truth is that the guest speaker business is full of ups and downs. When someone is terrific, you can’t beat it. But it can be expensive, both in terms of time and money.
If you want to cut down on expenses, inviting ONLY the guest that you know you can count on, there is still a great way to bring the real world into your classroom.
I’ve been promoting eClips for years as an alternative – a sort of “virtual guest speaker” approach if you will. And I had so many people asking me to “just pick the best clip on [whatever topic] for me!!” that I have done just that. For anyone teaching business planning, we have a new DVD. That makes using eClips a bit easier.
Note: I do not think video content can replace an in-person presentation, but it can be even better in certain ways: video clips are short and focused, placed where you want it, provides different faces to mirror the mosaic of students in your classroom, allows you to play and replay if you want a certain emphasis and finally, you can have students enjoy listening outside of class.