"POWERPOINT PRESENTATION SKILLS FOR SCIENTISTS"
POWERPOINT PRESENTATION SKILLS FOR SCIENTISTS Diane Hannemann McDougal Fellow, Careers & Professional Development & Anindita Sinha McDougal Fellow, Academic Writing Keys to a Successful Presentation Know your Audience Make it Clear! The Heart of the Matter: Sharp Figures & Pretty Pictures Prepare & Practice Zzzzzz … How You Say it Matters Not Compatible? Closure Know Your Audience • In your field - can jump in with brief background; non-experts - need more set-up • Purpose of your talk (Convince? Update? Teach?) • Communicate with your audience * size matters * formal vs. discussion format • Convey your enthusiasm about your work • Don‟t talk over their heads; don‟t talk down to them Make it Clear - Structure OUTLINE FIRST!! Controls number of slides & provides balance - Budget 2-3 minutes/slide (e.g. 30’ talk = 10-15 slides) Have one story to tell: - decide on underlying issue to be addressed - divide into logical, heirarchical subquestions - talk should be series of answers to these questions Make it Clear - Concept • Style & format - use color to highlight & organize - be consistent (audience knows where to look) • Read through presentation and see if main points stand-out - Heading = WHAT or HOW - Summary statement = CONCLUSION • “Speaker Support” - It doesn‟t carry you -- you are the focus - It supports your message Make it Clear - Don‟t Lose „em Science talk vs. murder mystery -- don’t keep you’re audience hanging! Know the fuzzy borders between experimental evidence and speculation (affects how you formulate your sentences) One concept per slide - cluster examples rather than moving through series too quickly Make sure you can be heard! Frustrate your audience & you lose them! The Heart of the Matter: Sharp Figures & Pretty Pictures • Clear title • Highlight particular areas/words • Don‟t crowd with too much info • Give credit where credit due - reference published data; borrowed figures The Heart of the Matter: Sharp Figures & Pretty Pictures Show bad showing a lot of unreadable info “for effect” - bad! if it can‟t be read -- it‟s a waste & it annoys audience The Heart of the Matter: Sharp Figures & Pretty Pictures Show bad The Heart of the Matter: Sharp Figures & Pretty Pictures GOOD (some showmanship here) The Heart of the Matter: Sharp Figures & Pretty Pictures GOOD Use one of Jen‟s figure slides color-coded parts, etc. Prepare & Practice Timing (how many slides & length of talk) Memorize intro and first few lines Beware of overpracticing * Don’t memorize entire talk -- stiff & BORING!! * 1X = 10-fold improvement * 2X = twice as good * 3X = polish Zzzzzz … • Talk to your audience (eye contact, conversational style) • Engage your audience by asking questions • Keep it interesting: - share interesting tidbits - give unique examples/analogies - humor disturbs slumber • Tiny type kills (use at least 18 point font ... ?) If you’re bored, you’re audience is snoring! How You Say it Matters VERBAL SKILLS BODY LANGUAGE • Slow down! • Eye contact • Don‟t read your • Stand straight - slides - use as cues breathe • Vary voice tone • Don‟t overgesture (conversational) with pointer, etc. • Genuine enthusiasm • Face your audience • SPEAK-UP Not Compatible? Ask ahead of time what equipment provided: - overhead projector vs. Powerpoint What format used: - PC vs. Mac? What type of disk acceptable: - floppy vs. Zip 100, Zip 250? Emergency back-ups: - overheads Closure • Summary of conclusions • Zoom-out (relevance or application of your work) • Next steps (if appropriate) • Acknowledgements Scientific Talks - Summary 1. Know your audience & their needs 2. Tell them a clear story developing each point upon the previous 3. Show them the evidence (sharp figures) 4. Keep them awake by engaging them 5. Give them great delivery -- prepare, practice & SPEAK-UP! 6. Share your enthusiasm for your work 7. Sell your message with a strong summary of conclusions Most importantly - Have