Guidelines for Presentation
The criteria below will be used for evaluating your performance.
Classmates will be involved in the assessment of the presentation. One
criterion is how you use the time frame.
When one is presenting information at any forum, the effective
use of the time allotted is important.
One cannot cover all the details, yet one must present enough
detail that the talk will be valuable to those in attendance.
You may assume that the audience has
some background knowledge.
With this in mind, you should attempt to identify and present the most
important aspects and clarify difficult concepts.
Visual Aids: You may use the board or the projector. If you use
slides, any PowerPoint-style presentation software is okay (but remember
that PowerPoint is not available on the Linux computers). Online
presentation systems that encourage "razzle-dazzle" slides like Prezi are
considered unprofessional and discouraged.
Please make any slides / notes available to everyone in the class.
Criteria for presentation:
- main points were clearly presented
- technical material was clearly presented
- thorough treatment of the material
- demonstrated understanding of the subject
- good use of visual aids or the board for demonstration
- good use of the time frame
- handled questions well
Pointers for presentations:
These are general in nature and should be kept in mind whenever you are
making an oral presentation. (You might keep these pointers in mind
when you prepare technical presentations in the future - like comps. It
that your job/raise/degree will depend upon your doing this sort of
- Do NOT embarrass yourself by being poorly prepared. Impressions
last a long time, and the poor preparation will be remembered long
after other events.
- Plan with the length of the presentation in mind. Rather than
try to cover everything and do it poorly, focus on important aspects
and give those a strong, thoughtful treatment.
- Give your listeners some introductory information. Explain
what you will be discussing. Cover that topic in detail. Let them
knowthat there was a lot of thoughtful preparation and that the topic is
nontrivial. Briefly tell them about other aspects not covered in
thepresentation. You might conclude with one of the following: a
an explanation of why the topic is important, or a statement ofopinion.
Then ask if anyone has questions.
- Since you know the evaluation criteria, make sure you pay
attention to those items.
- Show confidence. Demonstrate that you know the topic well.
- Do not worry about your speaking voice. Some of the best
technical presentations are by persons who would not be considered
eloquent speakers. It is the technical content that is important, and
it IS important that you be able to convey the technical material. Do
not speak too fast. Look at different members of the audience, connect
with them, and explain your material. Don't hide behind a monitor.
- Practice ALOUD before you come to make the presentation so
that you know exactly how much you can cover and whether it is clear to
- If you do not know the answer to a question you are asked, do
NOT pretend to know the answer. It will be readily apparent that you do
not. When asked a question, pause for a moment to think about your
response, and then state what you know.
- Do not be rattled by a failure of the presentation medium
such as a projection system. You will not have time to figure out how
to get some failed device or software working. Proceed without it.
- Do not do anything distracting such as jumping up to point to
something on the screen or popping your knuckles repeatedly. (I know
you wouldn't do this, but this is a reminder anyway.) Consider how
unprofessional this looks.