Checklist with advice -- for oral presentations (P. Hirsch G. Birol)

Developed for team presenters in Biomedical Engineering--but good general advice for anyone

Checklist for Effective Presentations
P. Hirsch and G. Birol

Whether it is short or long, formal or informal, a good presentation requires the following: 
(a)    useful, well organized content 
(b)    some kind of visual backup, such as well designed PowerPoint slides, handouts, diagrams sketched on a blackboard, or prototypes 
(c)    a polished presentation style  

To develop skill in these areas – and to overcome the nervousness that afflicts most people when they think about presenting their work orally -- it helps to practice different kinds of oral presentations and to get friendly feedback about your presenting strengths and weaknesses. 

Use the checklist below to help you practice your presentations and to get suggestions from your classmates and instructors. 



Effective content
1.    Good introduction of self  (smile; say “hello”)    
2.    Concise explanation of the purpose & organization of your talk (“Tell ‘em what you’re gonna tell ‘em; then tell ‘em” )    
3.    Useful information, reflecting good choices about how much detail to include & clear definitions and explanations (geared for non-experts)    
4.    Good transitions from one section of your talk to the next    
5.    A purposeful ending    

Effective slides or other visuals
6.    Professional (simple) but attractive layout – background should not detract from readability    
7.    Limited amount of text on a slide; good use of graphics    
8.    Good size: content visible at a distance    
9.    Concise, careful use of language    
10.    Correct grammar, punctuation, calculations    
Effective oral delivery
11.    Good posture & stance – face audience when speaking; don’t sway from side to side; no hands in pockets    
12.    Professional appearance (at least business casual)    
13.    Good eye contact – take turns looking at all parts of the room; smile    
14.    Articulate speaking style: no notes; adequate volume (speak “to the back of the room”); avoid verbal tics (um, uh, right!, so); good intonation (speak with enthusiasm for your subject)    
15.    Good pace and timing