3 Ways to Improve your PowerPoint Presentation Skills

For many students, making an oral presentation in front of a number of other teachers and students can be somewhat of a scary task. Adding to that, the prospect of demonstrating your computer skills in front of a live audience can make the presentation an even more daunting task. However, when utilised effectively, a presentation using Microsoft PowerPoint can actually assist you by helping to put across points that may have been difficult to convey otherwise. The key is to prepare well in advance and make sure that, at the very least, you know the start of your presentation inside out as most people feel comfortable in completing a presentation when it starts off well. In any case, here are 3 ways to improve your PowerPoint presentation skills:

Create a Systematic Structure

The arrangement of your presentation is key to its success and this should be one of the first things that you look at since a presentation that flows better will be much easier for your audience to follow). Before creating your slides, break down your presentation and think about the message that you want to get across. You can then use this to create an order for your slides. In addition to this, the following can also help to make your presentation flow better:

  • The first page should clearly display the title of the presentation
  • The second page should briefly outline what you will be talking about
  • Consider a slide with a sub heading every time a new topic is started
  • Finish with a slide that summarizes your presentation

Bear in mind that you are not trying to include all of your content within your slides. Your slides should serve as a visual guide on what you intend to talk about. Avoid using complete sentences in your slides and try to make your point using short phrases or statements. You can then expand on these statements yourself during the presentation. As a general rule, you should not exceed 30-50 words per slide. Remember, you want your audience to listen to you and not have to spend all of their time reading your slides.

Use Visual Aids

A visually appealing PowerPoint presentation will keep your audience interested and shows that you have put some thought into your presentation. When done correctly, it can also help to convey your intended message to your audience. Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 has a number of built in features that allow for an interesting and aesthetically pleasing presentation to be created. Make use of these features as they will keep both your audience and your examiner interested. Rather than displaying statistical or numerical data in a text format, consider making use of charts or graphs. Not only will this improve your presentation visually but it can also help to show trends as well as allowing for two pieces of data to be compared. Carefully chosen, relevant images can help to prove a point and can even be used to create a theme within your presentation. Impress your audience with the use of the various built in themes and transitions that Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 has to offer but be careful not to overdo it as this can result in a distracted audience who are more interested in your visuals than the point you are actually trying to make.

Engage your Audience

If you are able to engage your audience by getting them involved, it will help to keep them interested in what you are saying and there is also a higher chance that they will remember what you talked about after your presentation has finished. You could make use of the built in animations within PowerPoint to create a quiz or you could start a small discussion during your presentation. Engaging your audience is one of the things that most students find difficult so if you can pull it off, this will surely get you noticed by your examiner.

Remember, this is your presentation so make it your own by injecting your creativity and flair into it. Carefully make use of the presentational aids that are built into Microsoft PowerPoint and prepare well in advance for a successful PowerPoint presentation.

Author Bio:
Rashed Khan holds an MSc in Software Engineering and regularly guest posts on technology related topics. Rashed is currently guest posting on behalf of Phoenix Software who are offering huge discounts on Software for pupils and Software for teachers within the UK.

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2 Response to 3 Ways to Improve your PowerPoint Presentation Skills

August 17, 2011 at 8:19 PM

Great share andrelle you really know how to write and you have written it superb too.

December 13, 2011 at 3:47 AM

A very nice page. I think the effort has passed, we have to thank you:))
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