Joined: Jul 2016
Some tips for preparing and presenting a seminar or a project report
- 1. Motivate well: use diagrams, examples from industry and everyday life; bring out economic or scoial benefits.
- 2. Speak loudly and clearly. Don’t mumble.
- 3. Prepare the lecture site well before hand.
- 4. Slide should not spill over (outside) the screen. Adjust zoom lens or OHP location to fix this. Also focus well.
- 5. Keep weights on your slides to avoid them flying away. Use weights on all OHPs: used, to be used, in use.
- 6. If you have xeroxed slides onto transparencies, they may come with tissue paper separating them. Replace the tissue paper with thick (or regular) paper. Otherwise, it will blow and rustle whilst you are handling the OHPs.
- 6. Use a sharp pointer. Do not use the end of a pen that is blunt and will cast a shadow several inches wide, and your audience will not know where you are pointing.
- 6. Make sure your pointer does not cover up the slide material so as to make it difficult for your audience to read the slide.
- 6. Keep to time (practice several times)
- 7. When (if) told to skip to last slide, obey promptly.
- 8. Look for feedback by eye contact and gestures from guide and others.
- 9. Distinguish between where work of others ends and your (original) work starts. Take credit for what you have done; announce it loudly.
- 10. Don’t assume the questioner knowns more than you. Don't assume question has a deeper, sinister meaning; asnwer straightforwardly.
- 11. If you can’t hear a question or comment from the audience, come closer and ask.
- 12. Answer only the question asked. Answer in loud spoken words, not by gestures. Don’t mumble or eat words while answering.
- 13. Make sure graphs have a) axes labeled with units, names, values, b) curves with marking (symbols) and bold lines clearly distinguishable, c) a title at the top.
- 14. Once you place a OHP slide on the OHP check on the screen that
- a) aligned
- b) no spill over
- Then, don’t touch it again till the end; you may missalign it.
- 15. Keep a small alarm clock on the table to help you keep time. Don’t use your wrist watch for this – it is disturbing.
- 16. Keep eye contact with your audience.
- 17. In oral presentations, don’t read out equations. Give the gist.
- 18. Before submitting, sign the acknowledgement page.
- 19. Have an exact copy of submitted report for your reference during presentation.
- 20. Avoid covering parts of your slide during your talk.
- 21. If you slide your slide upwards, check each time to see it is aligned.
- 22. In Nomenclature, give: abbrevaiation or symbol, name, defining equation, first ref in text, as well as units. In addition, a Glossary of terms is useful.
- 23. In listing applications of the material/process being discussed, clearly distinguish between potential application, and the actual application of the item under study.
- 24. Be prepared for question on relevance of your topic/work to Chem engg/industry.
- 25. Speak slowly, don’t speed up to fit within time. It is better to cut our slides.
- 26. Smile and be confident.
- Give enough details in Figure caption to make the figure self-contained.
- Have a copy of your report with you during the presentation. This copy should be exactly what you submitted. So, make an extra copy for yourself before subnitting copies to the co-ordinator.
- Cite http refs correctly.
- Use pointer
- Answer what is asked.
- Have a nomenclature table with: notation, abbreviation, dimensions, units, vector/scalar/tensor, superscripts, subscripts, etc.
- Use conssitent nomenclature in all your chapters.
- Explain unusual nomenclature, e.g., dx of an integral appearing immediately after the integral sign rather than at the end of the intergal.
- Avoid spiral binding.
- Give refs in figure captions for copied/adapter/redrawn figs.
- Don't say "I don't know" ina hurry. Think and try to attempt an answer.
- Don't thank your guide during the oral presentation.
- Mantain eye contact with your audience, especially with your guide and examiner(s).
- Address your presentation mainly to (i.e., talk to) your examiner.
- Know typical values of parameters/variables in your presentation. E.g., in an presentation on electrophoresis, know typicsl values of applied voltages, gel media types, surface charges, resolutions, etc.
- 27. When your talk ends, say so loudly, e.g., "That eNds my presenation. Thank you." or "That concludes my talk. I shall try to answer any questions."
- In research, be willing to try again, especially after several initial failures.
- Compare your results with experiments/simulations/models in the literature, as well as with your own (other) experiments/simulations/models.
- If there are deviations, explain why.
- If you use different models, use all models for the same situation so that a comparison can be made.
- Mention and use the best reference to which you can compare your results. Usually, this will be an experiment or an observation from nature. For example, in simulating the shape of a cell, say an RBC, compare with the shape of a real RBC.
- While showing a video, have a continuous voice-over. Keep talking, repetitively if needed, and keep pointing to the phenomenon you wish to highlight.
- Before showing a video, tell what you will be showing, and what the viewer should pay attention to. Use a still from the video while you are doing this.
- While showing the video, set it up to loop so that you can keep talking until the audience is satisfied or bored. Know how to get out of the loop.
- Be clear what is novel in your work. State is boldly & prominently.
- Do not obstruct the image from the OHP/ LCD at any time. This often happens when you keep your OHP slides on the other side of the OHP, and you have to reach over the OHP to get the next slide.
- Set up the room well before the start time. This often means good advance liaison with the room in-charge and the attendants/ helpers.
- Quality, Quantity and Continuous update should be your keywords always.
- If you developed an apparatus, tell us what the state -of art in the world is, both in terms of commercially available equipment (give a list) and other research groups. That is compare your apparatus with a) commercial b) home-made various of the same.
- Give your examiner an idea of the quantity of work done. If you did, say, 50 runs in all (not all successfully), give us a tabular listing of them all (it may be crowded; that is OK), and tell us why your work was so difficult as to throw away so many runs. Give us an estimate of time per run (include preparatory and post run time) and any other special efforts you had to put in. Tell us how long you were in the lab each week.
- Required reading: Everyone must read this excellent tiny book before writing any technical report. Strunk and White's "Elements of Style" An older edition (not as good) is now available online: http://www.bartleby.com/141/strunk1.html
- For arrangements of any program like a seminar that involved outside people, the following task are to be done.
- 1. Inform Security Section
- 2. Inform Transport Section
- 3. Previous day of program keep the room clean. Dust the chairs & tables. See the Air conditioners, tube lights, fans are working properly. Know which switch is for what, and how to dim the room light.
- 4. Set up the LCD and Overhead Projector
- 5. Arrangements of cups and glass, Bisleri small bottles, one per guest.
- 6. Arrangements of Tea, Coffee and Biscuits; glasses for water /tea.
- 7. Keep the material/document, stationary etc ready previous day of the program.
- 8. Open the meeting room one hour before the program starts. Put on Air conditioners and tube lights etc
- 9. Handover all the material to concerned person/lab/department.
- 10. Keep handouts ready in Guest House
- 11. If possible, have a person outside the venue greeting the visitors.
- 12. If the venue is changed, keep a person at the previous venue till the events starts + 30 minutes.
- . I request your kind permission to go on this visit.
28. Good Luck!
[*]Here is an example of a good figure explaining a technique or experiment. Note the excellent graphics and elaborate figure caption. Just by reading the caption and the figure, the essence of the entire article can be quickly understood. Taken without premission from: Biological applications of multiphoton NSOM with multiple spectroscopic modes", Vinod Subramaniam, Asia/Pacific Microscopy and Analysis, January 2001, vol 19, page 9-11.