Ever heard of the phrase ‘death by Powerpoint’? Well, it doesn’t have to be real if you know what you’re doing. Don’t let the sound of ‘presentation’ throw you off. If you’ve gone through the below tips, practised your presentation verbally and given yourself the pep talk you need to do your best, it will be easy.

Here are a few tips on how to deliver the most effective PowerPoint presentation:

Part of delivering an effective presentation is being confident in your approach and having a clear understanding of your topic. Often times, students are so eager to get it over with that they feel the need to rush through it and ‘wing it’. Well, winging it is certainly not going to get you the marks that you want. Why not just put in the extra effort to do your research and to fully understand your topic. The slideshow section is the easiest part of the project. It’s all about knowing what to talk about.

Now, we all know that PowerPoint presentations can be extremely soul destroying when it doesn’t interest you. Some good advice would be to include the most important information regarding the topic and choose a few standout points that will appear throughout the presentation.

Avoid using too much text: As you can imagine, presentations are supposed to be mainly visual. Try and refrain from writing an entire essay or using text boxes filled with words as this could be incredibly boring. You’re not supposed to showcase your speech on your slide. Your slides should consist of short phrases or words that grab your attention, as well as imagery that you can revert back to, to support your messaging. Any other tips can be learned through professional presentation skills training courses.

Limit the number of slides: Depending on the subject, you might want to incorporate all your findings, but that is where your summarising skills come into play. You need to be able to look at your topic and categorise each piece of information into a particular group. That way you can keep your presentation short and to the point. And you’ll manage to deliver a successful, informative presentation without stretching your time limit or boring your audience to death. The point is to engage them.

The layout is important:If you don’t consider yourself to be a creative person, share your presentation with someone who is. Ultimately, it’s what you say that will push up your marks more than how your presentation looks, but there is certainly a degree of visual representation that you’ll be marked according to. Make sure your layout is easy on the eye. For example, position your slides in a way that your audience can read the titles and see the pictures clearly. Avoid using any bright colours or keeping your important information at the bottom of each slide. People sitting far away from you won’t be able to read it.

Avoid fancy fonts: While a fancy font might look appealing to you, it might not to others. Try and opt for a simple and easy-to-read font such as Arial, Times New Roman or Verdana. Keep the fonts uniform and don’t use more than two different fonts if you can help it. Also, make sure the font size is easy to read.

Keep to the same design theme: Much like your font choice, when you choose a slide design theme, make sure you stick to the same layout throughout. Also, make sure that the colours and theme that you choose fit your topic and doesn’t take away from what you’re presenting to your audience.

Use cue cards or notes: If you’re naturally a shy or uncomfortable person, going on a presentation skills course will help you to come out of your shell. Sometimes facing a bunch of unfamiliar faces can be daunting, so make yourself some cue cards or notes to bring along with you for your presentation. These cue cards are not for you to read while you’re in front of the classroom, but they’re there to guide you when you forget your next line or so forth. Just write down a few words, not your entire speech.

Final words

The only way you’re going to become comfortable with speaking in public is rehearsing at home and in front of others. Take the time to practice as much as possible. You’ll be surprised at how much your close friends and family can guide you on saying the right things and being more confident in your approach.

If you still struggle, and you need to deliver these speeches regularly, you should try and consider presentation skills training from a professional who can help you. These presentations are supposed to be fun and informative. Make the most of it and go the extra mile with yours. </p

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