200B/C Lab Series Presents:
Tips for Effective Presentations
Using Four Important Design Concepts:
If you pay attention to these
four concepts as you put the visuals together,the end products will be
Make it BIG
Test: can you read everything
from back row?
Keep it Simple
Guidelines for text on
No more than 6 lines of text per
No more than 7 words per line of
We all tend to put too many
words on our slides at first. Use the above guidelines to get rid of
text. Your audience can read faster than you can talk; you don't want their
attention split between the slide and you. (Using "builds" in PowerPoint
can help control the audience's attention.)
Make it Clear
Choose fonts, font sizes,
and colors that enhance readability of your slides. Most of PowerPoint's
default font sizes and color schemes work well; if you decide to experiment
with your own, be sure not to reduce readability in the
If you are using transparencies,
you can use the zoom feature of the projector to enlarge the print.
everyone should be able to read the material.
Be Consistent in Thought, Word,
Your goal should be to
and inform your audience. Make sure the stages of your presentation, and
the visual aids you use, follow a logical sequence. Use transitions to
help the audience understand how successive stages are related to each
other, and to the big picture.
A final word of
Begin preparing your visuals
If using the computer, make back-up
Allow enough time to make any
Project the visuals to verify
, spelling, sizes, and colors
Practice the presentation with the
Take the time to reconsider the
presentation as a whole.
Practice the presentation. A lot.
You want to be able to speak it, not read it.
Two cardinal rules of public
Never turn your back on an
Always maintain eye contact with
Other things: Room temperature,
noise, seating arrangement:
Check out the lighting and plan
how you (or someone else) will control it:
Do you need a pointer? a podium?
chalk? arrange for these in advance, or bring your
If there is unfamiliar
ask to have someone demonstrate it for you, or ask to have them operate
it for you during the talk. Don't fiddle during the talk. Try out your
visuals, focus projectors, before class starts.
Backup: Electronic equipment
sometimes fails. Be mentally prepared to cover yourself for 5 minutes while
bulb is replaced. Your handout can also serve as backup
***Please Note: Credit is due
to Jeff Radel for most of the above content. Check out his "Four
Important Design Tips"
page, which is part of a 26 page tutorial on "Designing
Effective Visuals." This, in turn, is part of an on-line tutorial
Presentations" at KU Medical Center. By all means visit these
We also recommend the
This page is maintained by Lois Putnam and Phredd Groves It was last updated on May 3, 2002