Monday, 25 August 2008

Presentation of your work I

As a rule of thumbs each presentation should be approximately 20 minutes – at least it is true for both doctor work and conferences’ article presentation.

It is very stick with this time restriction in order not to be interrupted in the middle of your presentation as a child will be interfering into parents conversation. You risk to leave very bad impression about yourself and you work and, what is more important, will have to skip a lot of details that can be either small or extremely important. Of course nobody will interrupt you during the doctor work presentation but you will face another risk – the committee will fall asleep by the end of your speech and this will be written by the red ink into history of the university and into your unofficial CV.

It is quite common at conferences that the session chair will give you a mark when you are dangerously close to the end of the time frame and there are no signs that you are completing your speech. For example s/he can show you a peace of paper with number 1 indicating that just one minute left. In practise it means that you should immediately proceed with conclusion as you have no more time to describe the content of your paper.

The core element of each presentation is slides shown normally on a screen. As a rule of thumbs you should plan the number of slides as a slide per 2-3 minutes – then you will have enough time to explain each and slides will not transit neither too fast nor too slow (so people will not be tired looking at the same peace of information). If your slides contain graphical representation of data then those surely requires explanation of what and how (!) is presented there: what is x-axis, what is y-axis, what means each point on the graph. Moreover you should explain what is the trend and its meaning: is it good that the line is growing of falling. Only thereafter you could proceed with conclusions that can be made basing on this picture since only then you and your auditorium will have a common understanding on what is going on the screen.

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