Presentation skills resources

This is a selection of online resources to help learners improve their presentation skills and language.

If you have any suggestions for resources we can use to help learners with other aspects of presenting, please leave a comment.

What you need to know about people

This short video asks us to consider these five points that will have a direct impact on how your audience will react to your presentation and how effectively you communicate with them:

  1. People learn better in short “chunks”
  2. Multiple sensory channels compete
  3. What you say is only part of your message
  4. If you want action, call the audience to action
  5. People feel what you feel

TED talks that teach public speaking

This infographic introduces 8 videos of TED talks that will help you consider key areas in speaking in public:

  1. The structure of your talk
  2. Using your voice effectively
  3. Making data and facts engaging
  4. Keeping your audience’s attention
  5. Ordering the topics in your talk
  6. Interacting with your audience
  7. Using body language effectively
  8. Making a good start

To see the full version of the infographic click the following link and then click on the image that appears: 8 TED Talks.

Signposting your presentation

Your presentation needs to be well structured but to maximise the impact of your talk you need to use language that signposts the structure for your audience. Here’s a web page that provides a useful list of signposting language:

Dealing with nerves

Surveys about our fears show that fear of public speaking comes close to the top of the list of situations that make us anxious. Read this Business Insider article in which leadership reporter Jacquelyn Smith suggests techniques for staying calm and controlling your nerves before a presentation.

Slide design

Using slides to reinforce what you have to say can be very effective, but you need to ensure that the slides complement what you say rather than act as a distraction. These online resources will help you consider the issues involved in good design.

  • Top Ten Slide Tips Garr Reynolds has written a number of books on presenting and in this short article he gives some practical advice about designing your slides.
  • 11 Dos And Don’ts Of Using Images In Presentations Using images in your slides can enhance the visual appeal of your talk and reinforce the message you want to convey, but you need to think carefully about how you use them. This short article should help you make the right decisions.

Handling questions

Here’s an article that offers advice on how to ensure your talk ends on a high note by taking effective control of the Q & A session.

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