Clear Presentation Initiative, the why

I think there are a ton of wonderful topics out there, that are currently being researched by scientists. Now more than ever, they need to be able to present them in front of not only their peers, but also to those who control money. The presentation, therefore, needs to cater to a wider audience. I have seen quite some scientific presentations, and have also given a few. After having guided some fellow Ph.D. students to making better presentations, I thought it might be interesting to share some of the thoughts. These thoughts only apply to the 20-minute-type presentations one gets, and is not intended for teaching purposes.A bad presentation:

  • Bores quickly, and thereby causes people to sleep
  • Interests only one or two of the audience who are directly involved in the project
  • Makes people wonder what talk is going to be next

 Now this is a very simplistic way of stating the obvious, so let’s move on to why a presentation would be boring:

  • The talk is not interesting to you
  • The speaker is not intelligible
  • Bad use of slides

These three reasons are the main cause for bad presentations, and all can be resolved. In the following posts (hopefully to appear soon), I’ll address each one individually:

  1. Spice up your talk
  2. Practice and prepare
  3. Slide design

Many would start with side design, but that is the least of your worries. Slides are only there as visual support to your talk, so the emphasis should be on YOU. more soon.  

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  1. The making of… a SAXS presentation | Looking At Nothing - A SA(X)S Weblog

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