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Presentation Skills. Orna Farrell What makes a great presentation? Who do you think is a great speaker?What makes them great? How do you feel about public speaking?. Discussion questions.  Topics. Remember the audience What make an effective presentation? Nerves

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presentation skills

Presentation Skills

Orna Farrell

discussion questions
What makes a great presentation?

Who do you think is a great speaker?What makes them great?

How do you feel about public speaking?

Discussion questions
  • Remember the audience
  • What make an effective presentation?
  • Nerves
  • Verbal & Non- Verbal communication 
  • Notes 
  • Using Powerpoint
  • Effective slides
  •  10 steps for preparing your presentation
remember the audience
Remember the audience
  • "The most important aspect of making a presentation is to consider the needs of the audience. If you simply read or repeat information ‘off by heart’ your presentation will probably sound very flat and dull to the audience. There is also a greater risk that you will lose your place in your talk." (Cottrell, 2009)
  • Engage your audience: talk to them not at them
  • Audiences want variety
  • Audiences get bored
  • Audience like images: the slides are for them
what makes an effective presentation
What makes an effective presentation?
  • Careful planning & preparation
  •  clear structure
  • Good time management
  • Relevant & interesting content
  • Good communication skills
  • Appropriate use of slide/supporting documentation
  •  Suitable audience participation
careful planning preparation
Careful planning & preparation
  • This involves researching & choosing relevant content
  • Preparing slides
  •  Allocating tasks if group work
  • Planning slide handovers
  • Preparing an introduction & conclusion
  • Reharsing the presentation: Speak aloud & use the actual room for the presentation
  • Think about where you will stand, especially if its a group
time management
Time Management
  • Time your presentation
  • Allow for a few minutes extra
  • Better to be too short than too long
  • If in a group: give each member a similar time period to speak, over running will make you unpopular
  •  Make sure your content is relevant & interesting
  • Use examples, definitions, theories, case studies, quotes and personal examples to make the presentation interesting
  • Images: photos, graphs, charts, maps are all effective means of communication
structure 1
Structure 1
  • A clear structure is very important
  •  Introduction: introduce yourself & your group. Outline the main parts of the presentation. Say how long it will take and when you will have questions
  • Have an introduction: Hello my name is Orna Farrell and Im  going to talk to you about......... Firstly I will discuss..........then ................... and lastly................................. The presentation will take 10 minutes and I will take questions at the end 
struture 2
Struture 2
  • Conclusion
  • Thank the audience for their attention
  • Invite questions
  • Stay standing and wait for the questions....dont run off
verbal communication
Verbal Communication
  • limit your use of jargon
  • Explain new or complex terms
  • Speak slowly & clearly
  • Vary your tone & pitch
  •  Breath
  •  Finish sentences
  •  Stand straight, it improves your voice projection 
  • Use pauses
  •  Record yourself
non verbal communication
Non-verbal communication

There are basically three elements in any face-to-face communication:• words• tone of voice and• body language.

These three elements account differently for the meaning of the message: - Words account for 7%- Tone of voice accounts for 38% 

- Body language accounts for 55% of the message

non verbal communication1
Choose where you will stand

 Keep your hands still

Face the audience, dont put your back to the audience

Eye contact- lighthouse

Don't read from the screen

Dont hide behind the computer

Non-Verbal Communication
  • It is a good idea to use notes during your presentation
  • Don't have the whole presentation written will just read
  • Have keywords & bullet points on cards or print out your slides and use them as notes
  • Don't have loads of pages to russle through and get lost
  • Learn your presentation, the notes are only back up
using powerpoint
Using powerpoint
  • Common mistakes:
  • Over reliance on the powerpoint
  • Information overload
  •  Getting too technical & wasting time
  • Thinking in bullet point
  • Too many fonts and styles
  • Boring slides
  • Only talking about whats on the slide
how to make good powerpoint slides
How to make good PowerPoint slides


  • Use bullet points & short phrases
  • Use a consistent slide background
  • Use pictures, graphs and short clips
  • Use big font
  • Proof read your slides for spelling and grammar


  • Use long pieces of text
  • Flashy graphics & animation
  • Use many different slide designs, fonts
  • Many different colour fonts
background bad
Background – Bad
  • Avoid backgrounds that are distracting or difficult to read from
  • Always be consistent with the background that you use
background good
Background - Good
  • Use backgrounds such as this one that are attractive but simple
  • Use backgrounds which are light
  • Use the same background consistently throughout your presentation
colour bad
Colour - Bad
  • Using a font colour that does not contrast with the background colour is hard to read
  • Using colour for decoration is distracting and annoying.
  • Using a different colour for each point is unnecessary
    • Using a different colour for secondary points is also unnecessary
  • Trying tobe creativecan alsobe bad
colour good
Colour - Good
  • Use a colour of font that contrasts sharply with the background
    • Ex: blue font on white background
  • Use colour to reinforce the logic of your structure
    • Ex: light blue title and dark blue text
  • Use colour to emphasize a point
    • But only use this occasionally
slide layout bad
Slide layout - Bad
  • This page contains too many words for a presentation slide. It is not written in point form, making it difficult both for your audience to read and for you to present each point. Although there are exactly the same number of points on this slide as the previous slide, it looks much more complicated. In short, your audience will spend too much time trying to read this paragraph instead of listening to you.
10 steps for preparing your presentation
10 steps for preparing your presentation
  • read the assignment specification
  • Create a task list
  • Create a time chart
  • Review your existing knowledge of the topic
  • Research & read on the topic
  •  Decide on the content
  •  Find examples
  •  Decide who is your audience
  • Make slides
  • Rehearse presentation
  • Preparation is the key to a good presentation
  • Face the audience
  • Speak slowly & clearly
  • Humour
  • If something goes wrong move on!
further reading
Further reading

Chivers, B et al.(2007) A student's guide to presentations. London: Sage.

Van Emden, J. et al (2004) Presentation skills for students. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

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