Questions tagged [presentation]

Oral presentations: preparation of slides, preparation of the talk, delivery…

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152
votes
9answers
20k views

What to do about questions that are designed to embarrass the speaker?

I've attended a lot of seminars and lectures by now, and it's typical for the chair of the seminar to offer audience members a chance to ask questions of the speaker about their work after the ...
138
votes
18answers
25k views

Why do most people think it's a bad idea to read from slides?

As many of you probably know, almost all advice regarding doing better academic talks includes universal advice to not put too many words in any one slide, and to not read straight from slides (this ...
128
votes
18answers
31k views

Useful strategies for answering “dumb” questions in a talk?

It has often been said that there is no such thing as a dumb question. And yet - perhaps due only to inattention, lack of sleep, or hunger - otherwise brilliant people sometimes manage to ask some ...
126
votes
22answers
9k views

Should the slides in a presentation be self-explanatory or be as minimal as possible?

When you do a research presentation, what is usually the focus that you take. Some professors tell me to make the slides as self explanatory as possible, and I quote: Someone should be able to ...
104
votes
14answers
33k views

What is the best “last slide” in a thesis presentation?

There are some possible options as the last slide of a typical thesis presentation. I've heard of some possibilities: A question-mark image (as the time to be slaughtered by the referees!), A Thank ...
86
votes
6answers
6k views

How to become well-known in the research community while being a PhD student

This question is mainly about building useful contacts during the course of the doctorate. How does one keep the relevant community in other universities informed about his/her research work? One way ...
81
votes
16answers
15k views

How to deal with people looking at their mobile phone during my presentation?

I was invited to give a research seminar in another department, and two professors kept looking at their mobile phones while I was talking. They were doing this at the start of my talk, and they kept ...
80
votes
9answers
26k views

Giving a career talk in my old university, how prominently should I tell students my salary?

I have offered to do a talk at my old university’s 'employabilty fair' ten years after graduation, where am I now. With some advice on traps to avoid, how to make the transition from university to ...
80
votes
8answers
11k views

How can I tell if I have simplified my talk too much?

My experience listening to talks (of all kinds - seminars, conference talks, even Masters/PhD defenses) is that they tend to be very difficult to understand. This happens even if they're within my own ...
76
votes
6answers
11k views

Cannot present paper at conference. Instructor wants to move me to second author

Due to unforeseen circumstances, I am not able to present my paper at a Computer Science conference. Without the presentation the paper will not be published. My instructor has said that she will ...
73
votes
9answers
97k views

Can I use images showing up in Google search for my presentation slides without violating any copyright?

I am teaching a freshman science course for the first time and I am doing also outreach activities in high schools. To be able to attract the young generation to science one has to connect the ...
71
votes
11answers
20k views

The lecturer supposed to grade my presentation fell asleep while I held it. Should I complain?

TLDR: I am attenting a seminar where the grade is based entirely on a talk I hold. The responsible lecturer fell asleep during the talk multiple times, and I am worried about my grade, feel insulted ...
63
votes
5answers
9k views

Should I include funny pictures in my slides?

I am preparing slides for a short (10min) talk at the group meeting. The talk is about a fairly serious piece of (pure) mathematics, and it so happens that there is a very relevant one-panel webcomic. ...
63
votes
15answers
13k views

Lecturer with anxiety. How to survive in academia?

I've been a long time member of academia.SE but I created this alt account because the question is a bit embarrassing. I finished my PhD 4 years ago and after a 2 year postdoc at a different ...
60
votes
4answers
9k views

Face-saving way of asking whether audience is familiar with specific topic

Sometimes I give a talk for a limited number of persons (typically well below 15). Here, the audience consists of persons from different subfields of the same fields. Consequently, I am often not ...
60
votes
7answers
8k views

How to concentrate during conference talks where the quality of the presentation is poor?

I have read a lot of tips on how to give a good conference talk: know your audience, give context, don't talk too fast, give your talk a clear structure or story, minimize text on slides, etc. ...
58
votes
11answers
61k views

How to handle a student's public speaking anxiety when teaching a class that requires presentations?

In one of the courses I'm teaching this semester, each student has to give a 20-minute in-class presentation of a paper relevant to the topic of each class. One of the students has approached me ...
54
votes
11answers
10k views

Tongue slip problem in presentation even after a good amount of practice

How can I overcome the tongue-slip problem in conferences, meetings and seminars? I have read many discussions regarding conference presentation, such as delivering a good presentation, staying ...
51
votes
6answers
6k views

How to prepare a presentation if there is a visually impaired person in the audience?

When preparing a presentation, I usually avoid putting a lot of text and then read the slides. To me, the best presentation contains very good figures with presenter explaining them, and not reading ...
49
votes
18answers
11k views

In teaching, what are the advantages of using slides over doing board work?

At my university, most lecturers and professors use slides in teaching. This is true for most engineering, mathematics and science courses. I am more comfortable with doing the board work and then ...
49
votes
6answers
12k views

Better to give a poor/unfinished talk at a conference or cancel it?

Here's my dilemma. I met a post-doc at a conference a while back, and told him about the project I was working on at the time, and he subsequently invited me to give a talk in a session at an upcoming ...
48
votes
7answers
19k views

Using rage faces in presentation

I was asked to give a talk at a workshop. I plan to tell a short story, 5 - 7 minutes, about how my collaborator and I came up with the idea presented in the talk. This story would: Give the ...
48
votes
9answers
8k views

How should a non-native English presenter respond to a question they did not understand?

I'm not an English native speaker, and my question is, probably, only relevant for non-native speakers. Sometimes, native speakers just don't care how easily the presenter can understand the ...
48
votes
9answers
19k views

What to say in one-minute presentation of a poster in a scientific conference?

The chair person of my poster session has told each participant to make an one-slide presentation with one minute maximum speaking time (known as poster blitz or poster madness). I am wondering what ...
46
votes
5answers
5k views

How do I 'read the room' and adjust my pace while lecturing?

I am a PhD student. I've never taught a lecture-style course before. I just filled in for my advisor at the last minute, giving a lecture in an undergrad course. I taught from the lecture slides that ...
44
votes
10answers
11k views

Is it good to have slides that may be skipped during a presentation?

I am preparing a seminar talk. Currently the presentation contains some theorems and some proofs. Probably, I will not have time to explain all the proofs - I will have to skip some of them. My ...
44
votes
15answers
7k views

How should I control my nervousness, so as not to disturb my presentation on the day of a conference?

My paper is successfully accepted in a very prestigious and reputable conference, to be presented orally in one of the presentation sessions. This is my first time that I am going to give such a talk ...
43
votes
3answers
6k views

Asking to not present in a conference on Saturday

I am about to submit a paper to a conference. I just found out that the conference falls in Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Since I am an observant Jew, I don't want to present on Saturday. ...
43
votes
4answers
3k views

How many times can you present the same material at different conferences before it becomes stale?

I just finished my PhD in Mathematics and am in between my PhD and postdoc positions. I was very fortunate to have the ability to present my research to seminars and conferences over the last couple ...
42
votes
8answers
6k views

How to structure presentation to avoid getting questions that will be answered later in the presentation?

In the past when I've given presentations at my lab and conferences, I've not had to deal with this problem. But at my new institution I'm constantly dealing with the following phenomena. I'm ...
42
votes
10answers
11k views

Is having your hand in your pocket during a presentation bad?

Someone I know has given a presentation at a American University. He supposedly had his hand in his pocket while giving the presentation. A foreign student attacked him for this. The person ...
42
votes
5answers
5k views

How to respond to the trivialisation of one’s work and unjustified demands for a considerable extension of the research?

I am a graduate student in engineering whose work includes a lot of programming and implementation of the developed theories. I am not a computer scientist, but I am a fairly skilled programmer, at ...
41
votes
5answers
7k views

How to cite oneself as co-author without all names, for resume or presentation?

My questions regards the format of citation. For the context: I am a student, presenting my work (with slides) and referring to the publications in which I am co-author (never in the first three ...
40
votes
6answers
12k views

Stating surprise about another researcher in my talk

I will be giving a talk in a research seminar in mathematics in a couple of weeks. During this talk, I'm planning to present one particular result of mine which shows that a certain method introduced ...
40
votes
10answers
12k views

Is it acceptable to mark off or comment on someone's presentation based on their non-standard English accent?

I am working as a TA for a seminar course and class presentations are considered a significant part of the total mark for the course. Some of the students in the class — who mostly happen to be ...
40
votes
16answers
5k views

Good slide design for teaching?

When I am preparing slides for a course (as I have been today, weekend be damned), aside from questions of pacing and exposition, I often find myself asking various questions about the layout of ...
40
votes
7answers
6k views

Is it a bad idea not to use slides in my Ph.D. oral defense?

I am preparing for my Ph.D. oral defense in mathematics and am reading tips from various resources. It seems that the usage of slides is usually assumed, though it is generally not required. For me, I ...
40
votes
5answers
7k views

How to manage very weak students presenting problem solutions?

In some of my more advanced classes, I have students present solutions to problems on a rotating basis. Not all solutions are perfect, but for almost all students this goes okay. However, sometimes ...
39
votes
15answers
12k views

What did Universities use in lectures before they starting using PowerPoint?

On my 'quest' to understand how universities have changed over the past decade(s), I'm curious as to how teaching in lectures was done before the days of PowerPoint (which as an undergraduate is ...
38
votes
11answers
25k views

What are the key features of a short (15 min) conference presentation?

I am preparing to give a conference presentation from scratch. What is an effective ratio of introduction / methods / results / conclusion slides? How can I balance the details of research without ...
38
votes
1answer
5k views

Should I worry that a graduate student somewhere gave a talk using my abstract?

I was looking for mentions of my work on the internet and I came across a seminar series in which a graduate student had given a talk using an abstract of mine. It is unpublished work which I posted ...
36
votes
9answers
5k views

Saying “good question” during a seminar talk

During seminars and talks, some presenters hear a question and compliment it by saying "Good question." Could this possibly offend the asker? Could this be viewed as a tactic to pretend being unfazed ...
36
votes
4answers
14k views

When should I stop including talks on my cv?

When I was applying for grad school, I felt that my CV was pretty empty and so I included all my research related presentations (posters/talks) from conferences/competitions/etc (11 of them at the ...
33
votes
9answers
7k views

In a math talk, is it better to display the number of slides left?

In a math talk (at a seminar or a conference, not teaching) that uses projected slides, is it better to display the number of slides left or not? What are the pros and cons? Some people tell me they ...
33
votes
5answers
6k views

What to do if an audience member refuses to let you answer their question?

I was reading this question about famous people asking rude questions in talks, and it reminded me of a situation which happened at the end of my academic career. I would really like some advice on ...
32
votes
9answers
9k views

How to do a flawless and natural presentation?

I have been attending a number of academic / professional conferences recently and one thing that really awed me was the flawless and natural way in which the speakers presented on their topics. Sure,...
32
votes
4answers
3k views

What do I need to ensure my presentation will go smoothly?

From a technical stand point, what do I need to show up to a conference with (in general) to ensure that my presentation will go smoothly? Two things I can think of: Presentation remote Equipment ...
32
votes
3answers
5k views

Is it inappropriate to explain why I really want to live where the university is located in my job talk?

I am preparing to give a job talk for an on-campus interview for a tenure-track assistant professor position. The university is located in city X. I really want a job in city X because I have many ...
32
votes
6answers
1k views

Is use of unconventional design elements or layout something frowned upon in academic context?

I quite enjoy paying attention to how I design my documents and presentations. I usually spend hours thinking over and designing my slides for a workshop or presentation, so that they are ...
32
votes
6answers
26k views

Talks vs. poster presentations: Which is better for advertising your research and building research networks?

I'm looking into applying to present at a conference for undergraduates in mathematics this summer. When I apply, I have to either apply to give a talk (~20 minutes) or present a poster. From what I'...