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Tips to Make a Good Presentation

  • Posted by Amanda
  • June 06, 2017
Tips to Make a Good Presentation


Why do I need to know how to make a good presentation? When preparing to make a speech or presentation you may ask yourself “What factors make up effective public speaking?” or “How do I make a great presentation?” Now more than ever, students are asked to give presentations in addition to or in lieu of traditional writing assignments. It is because of those questions that we have these 10 tips for great presentations.

Make a good presentation

Why Use a Presentation

Isn’t an essay enough to prove that you understand the topic? Not always. An essay is a bit of a snapshot in time. It doesn’t even prove you truly have mastered the material. It just shows that you wrote stuff down. There’s something different about an oral presentation. With a presentation, you have to take questions and have your ideas tested by a real live audience.

This is also your opportunity to learn some valuable skills. The truth is that even if you don’t love the idea of public speaking, you’re going to have to do it sometimes. That may not mean you’ll be standing in front of hundreds of people giving a speech, but this is great practice for presenting in meetings.

This is also a good time to take a deep dive into presentation software. You can learn about the different features of the software, how to pick the best font for a given situation, what it takes to embed video, or how to play background music.

One last thing to consider. Not all students are naturally talented at writing, but they are very comfortable speaking in front of a crowd to share their knowledge. Many engineering and science students may find that they are better able to engage with an audience, and show examples than they would be at composing an essay.

What Makes a Good Presentation

Have you ever watched a Ted talk? If so, you’ve probably sat through many a speech on topics that you had no idea were interesting to you at all. That’s the beauty of a great presentation. They draw you in and get your attention regardless of the subject.

If you’ve never watched one of these famous presentations before, make sure you put that on your to-do list. This is a great way to pick up on some elements that truly make a presentation special.

Is PowerPoint The Only Tool For a Presentation?

There are some good reasons to use PowerPoint to give your talk. It’s probably the standard format at your school. You will likely use that in the business world as well. Also, your professor may ask you to send a copy of the PPT file for evaluation. You may also find it easier to use one of the templates that the software offers instead of creating your own from scratch.  That said, giving a slide show is only one way to do a presentation.

You could also opt to make and showcase a professional looking video in the background. Look into using tools like Canva or Powtoon for sharing pictures and animations as well. There are plenty of apps that allow you to present, share screens in real-time, and even pass the mike (so to speak) to members of your audience.

1. Don’t Crowd Your Slides or Cover Too Many Topics

Each of your presentation slides should be easily digested. Your audience should be able to glance at your slide and absorb all the information from it in just a few seconds. Crowded slides are also difficult to read. Remember to use plenty of white space. If necessary, take several slides to explain a point.

What if I have to print the slides to pass out to my audience? That’s a lot of paper! 

Yes, that is a lot of paper. Rather than printing everything, consider making and presenting a summary slide to be shown at the end of each point you make. It will bring things together for those watching your presentation, and you can simply print out the summaries rather than every individual slide.

2. Don’t Read The Info From Your PowerPoint

Nobody wants to listen as you read the information word for word from the presentation slides. Instead, take a moment to look at the slides and take out small bits of the most interesting information. Then with that information add onto it from what you know, you’ll create a much more interesting presentation this way.

You can also use the information on the slide as a jumping-off point. Remember the audience can read what’s on the screen. It’s up to you to contextualize it with something meaningful.

3. Use Hand Gestures

Point out facts, wave your arms around, using your hands adds more dimension to the presentation. If you stand with your arms flat against your sides, that’s the dimension you will give to your presentation: Flat. Keep your body language engaged and interested.

If possible, try to move around a bit. This will help you make eye contact with different parts of the room. Carry a remote to transition slides, and you will get rid of that awkward ‘I don’t know what to do with my hands’ feeling.

4. Get Excited!

In order to give a good presentation, you have to sound excited. You have to fluctuate during points of interest, you have to engage with the audience. Pump yourself up, and in doing so you will excite your audience as well.

Of course, this can be difficult to do if you yourself find the topic to be dreadfully boring. If that is the case, work hard to find one or two things about it that are meaningful to you. Then, arrange your presentation so that you can address those points as well. Talking about something that interests you will help you stay engaged and enthusiastic.

5. Look at Your Audience

Don’t stare at your shoes, or the PowerPoint. You need to focus your attention on your audience. If you tend to look away from others try focusing on one person, on perhaps an object in the room.

How to make a good presentation

6. Interact With Your Audience

Ask them questions, let them ask questions. Engage in conversations with them, very good presentations tend to get the audience involved in some way or another. It helps them to connect with the information even more.

7. Tell Jokes

Sometimes even the most serious topics require a joke, it makes the presentation more interesting and can be a great way to break up an awkward moment of silence without using “Ummmm” or “Ahhhh””

8. Connect With The Info By Telling a Story: Share Examples

If you have a personal experience that has anything to do with what you are presenting, use that in your presentation. A short story can draw interest towards the topic, as well as engage the audience.

9. Make Sure You Are Fully Prepared For The Presentation

Practice, make sure you have your notes prepared, make sure you have studied properly. All of these things are vital to your success during your presentation. Remember that those who present good presentations spent lots of time practicing for the part.

10. Use Visual Aids

Pictures help the audience make better connections, rather than have a slideshow with just notes try putting a few slides with just a picture on them. The visual will pop out much more vividly and will allow the audience to make a connection.

When making your speech always remember to keep it interesting, make sure it interests you, and engage with the audience. By doing those things you can ensure that your presentation stands high above the rest. Remember there is a great difference between a good presentation and a great presentation. And if you need some help don't be afraid to ask for it from one of the top essay writing services. If they are helping you with tasks such as writing and visual design, you can focus on making your presentation entertaining and engaging.

Parting Thoughts: A Checklist of Good Presentation Skills

As you learn how to give a good presentation, get some feedback! Rehearse for a friend, and ask them to evaluate your performance based on the following factors:

  • Speak in a clear voice with an animated tone.

  • Face your audience, and use inviting body language.

  • Capture attention with engaging storytelling.

  • Design slides for readability.

  • Don’t read! Speak!

  • Know your audience to keep it interesting.

  • Bounce ideas off of friends and coworkers.

  • Use good presentation fonts.

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