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What to say in the body

After introducing your aim and offering an outline of the talk, the focus will turn to the specific content – the main body.

In this main section, you should provide more detailed coverage and explanation of the important elements of the presentation.

Use language that clearly signals that you are starting or ending a sub-section, highlight what you have covered and show links between different parts. This will ensure that your talk is coherent and that essential components of the main message are being emphasised.

Here’s a list of terms that may be of use at certain points during the main body of your talk:

Table showing useful phrases for the body of a presentation, this can be viewed as a PDF when selected.

There are many different ways to structure the body of your presentation and focus on the important elements.

Listen to Zahra presenting her first main point (the need for a new HR strategy) and consider how she organises this section and what language she uses to communicate the message.

Sample audio of Zahra’s first main point

Zahra uses the following techniques to deliver her first main point. She:

  • Engages the audience and reminds them of the main focus – the need for a new strategy

  • Introduces an important point based on research (three examples listed)

  • Uses a contrast marker (‘despite…’) to show some positive measures taken by company

  • Identifies evidence-based issues (refers to three points on slide)

  • Highlights a necessary course of action to address the need

Your task

Now listen to the next part and how Zahra reinforces her first main point.

Sample audio of Zahra reinforcing her first main point

Discuss with your fellow learners the techniques that she uses to achieve this.

  • What signalling phrase does she use to move to a new point?

  • How does she outline the process?

  • How does she engage the audience?

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This article is from the free online course:

What Makes an Effective Presentation?

Coventry University