5.10 Chapter Assignment

Plagues & Pandemics Assignment

This chapter’s materials focused on four notable pandemics in human history. For this assignment you are required to select another pandemic (not among the four focused on in this chapter), conduct research on it, and create a voiceover slideshow presentation (using PowerPoint, Keynote, Prezi or Google Slides) that provides information and a detailed background on your chosen pandemic (see questions below). It is important to complete all chapter materials (chapter content, including all embedded links to readings and videos, and the required course materials) prior to starting the assignment.

Information about some pandemics may not be available, as data was never collected, documented, made public, etc. Some information about the pandemic may be speculative or theoretical in nature. Keep these factors in mind when selecting a pandemic for your assignment and framing your voice/slide content. If you start your research and find minimal and mostly speculative information, it is recommended that you switch to a different pandemic.

Assignment Formatting, Style & Length

  • Presentations must include a cover slide that identifies the topic of the presentation/which pandemic, whose presentation it is, and the course number.
  • Be sure to include images and photographs (these must be properly sourced).
  • Videos cannot be included in the presentation.
  • Presentation must be 3-5 minutes in length (no longer than 5 minutes).
  • Presentations created in PowerPoint, Keynote, or Google Slides should have between 6 and 8 content slides (10 slides maximum including a title page slide and a reference slide).
  • Due to the expanding nature of each Prezi slides, assignments created in Prezi will likely have fewer than the 6 to 8 main slides (in order to fit within the presentation time limit).
  • Presentations must include a reference slide (APA format).
  • Use APA for in-text citation style on slides and for the reference slide.
  • Avoid putting too much text on a slide. The voice over allows you to elaborate.
  • Paraphrase and use point form as opposed to relying on direct quotes.
  • Proofread slides for typographical errors and to make sure slide content is clear, well written, and intelligible.
  • When recording your voiceovers, speak slowly and clearly. If you are rushing through your slide-notes then you have too much content. It is usually best to record your voiceovers one slide at time. This enables you to check how you sound, make adjustments, and re-record smaller amounts of your presentation.
  • Submission must be in MP4 format (use “save as” or “export to” to convert to MP4 format or do a Google search for instructions).

Steps to Completing the Assignment

  1. Identify a pandemic that is not among the four focused on in the chapter materials.
  2. Research the identified pandemic and find a minimum of 6 sources (in addition to the chapter materials) to help you answer the assignment questions below. No more than 2 of the sources can be media-type resources. The remainder must be academic sources (i.e., peer-reviewed journal articles and books) and reports from government and non-governmental organizations (i.e., NGOs).
  3. Prepare a 3-5 minute presentation (see Assignment Formatting, Style & Length above for limits on number of slides for presentation submissions).
  4. In the slides, address the questions below.
  5. Support the points/arguments on slides with APA in-text citations that reference the materials you have found in your research, and those that are in the chapter. In-text citations to support your points/arguments are essential and required. Be sure to use a diverse range of materials as opposed to relying heavily on one, or a few sources.
  6. Develop an APA style reference section for all material cited (only material cited in the body of the presentation can be included in a reference section) and include that as your final slide.

The following must be submitted for the assignment

  • A MP4 version of the slideshow presentation as detailed above.

Assignment Questions

Questions do not need to be answered in order. Some answers can/should be combined on the same slide. Keep in mind that answers are provided both via the slide and the voice over, with the latter giving you the ability to expand on slide content. Answers may not be available for every question. If more than a few of the details required to answer the questions are missing, it is recommended that you either do more research or switch to a different pandemic for your presentation.

  1. How/why is this considered a pandemic?
  2. When did the pandemic start and end? How many waves occurred and when?
  3. Where is the pandemic believe to have originated?
  4. How did the pandemic spread?
  5. How many people were infected? Once infected, what percentage of people survived? Were there lasting health impacts of infection? What were they?
  6. How many people died?
  7. Is there a vaccine to prevent the disease? When was it developed? How effective is it?
  8. Is there a cure once infected? When was it developed? How effective is it?
  9. Does the disease persist in the 21st century? When were the most recent diagnosed cases? When was the latest outbreak? Where have recent diagnosed cases or outbreaks occurred?
  10. How did humans respond to the pandemic?
  11. What were the social, economic, and political impacts of the pandemic?
  12. Identify 2 commonalities and 2 differences between the pandemic you identify and the COVID-19 pandemic.


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On Death and Dying Copyright © 2022 by Jacqueline Lewis is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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