Talk Tips

Time. Don't exceed your allotted time. As a rule of thumb keep presentation to 80% of the allotted time. [In the course, a separate time is allotted for questions, so the talk can last the full 10/20 minutes, but no more.]

Content. Be able to summarize content of presentation in two or three well-constructed sentences

  A well-prepared abstract,
  an organized set of well-chosen viewgraphs,
  a concise `cheat-sheet,' and
  an outline to keep you on track during talk.

Know your stuff. Accurate, complete, well-phrased descriptions of scientific information portray speaker as a knowledgeable, reliable source of information.

Rehearse. Always rehearse a presentation. For each individual occasion, prepare seminar from scratch, always with the specific audience in mind.

Formulation and Argumentation. The lecture must proceed as a logical unfolding of information. During the presentation facts must be enumerated in sequential steps, each step firmly founded on the previous one.

To communicate effectively, avoid the use of jargon whenever possible! Speech reflects our thought processes, and an imprecise speaker is often an unfocused thinker.

Delivery. As with written text, the end of the sentence designates the "stress" position. It is here the audience expects to be provided with the most important information.

Slowing down is a remedy for 90% of most speakers' problems.

Looking straight at members of the audience establishes the notion that you are talking to them, not just in front of them.