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Academic presentations

In this video students share their own experiences of preparing and giving a presentation at university.
There is a certain level of flexibility when it comes to presentation topics choices. And our lecturers would usually give us a list of topics that are relevant to the course itself and also that would fit the way that would meet the criteria of how the students will be evaluated at the end of the term for that course. Don’t put too many words on the slide, just put the key words and the phrases. And then develop your idea from them. What you should say shouldn’t be exactly the same as what is on the slides. Create a clear PowerPoint.
You don’t put too much information on it because you want people to pay attention to your speech instead of reading off your PowerPoint, basically. I try to design my slides very carefully and not to include too much content in the slides, just include the notes and headings and the subheadings. To prepare for my presentations and to ensure that I give it my absolute best on the day of delivering that speech, I would prepare it sometimes in front of the mirror in the form of a monologue to practise on my own to be able to observe my movement and all aspects that are involved in my final, finished product.
Or I would sometimes have my roommates sit down and pretend to be my targeted audience. And then at the end of my practise session, I would ask them for their honest opinions on how I did. And then their feedback will be taken seriously. I found it useful if you practise your speech in front of your mirror. So from there, you can see your face expressions. And also, don’t forget your time. Don’t forget to time yourself. I’m a business management student. And we have to do a lot of group presentations during our classes. Usually, we do it with three or four students, and each of us will give a speech about 3 to 4 minutes.
One of my major weaknesses when it comes to public speaking is I tend to put on too many hand gestures, or I seem overly physically enthusiastic when I deliver a presentation. This is the feedback that I very frequently get from people that I practise them with. But when it comes to my strong point when giving a presentation would be that I exude confidence when I speak, which allows me, as a public speaker, to deliver the message to my audience in a convincing manner.

It’s quite common for students to be required to give an oral presentation during their university studies. This may involve speaking to a small seminar class or to a larger group, depending on the course and the level of study.

Presentations may also be delivered online to your teachers and/or fellow students and classmates. In some contexts online presentations may be live, but in others they may be recorded and assessed asynchronously.

In this video, students, Dandan, Junyim, Gloria and Ran, share their own experiences of preparing and giving a presentation at university.

We’d like to hear if you’ve had to give a presentation in front of a group of people in your country.

  • If so, what was it about?

  • Did you speak in English or in your own language?

  • How would you feel about doing the same presentation in English?

Share your answers in the comment area below.

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