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[ESL/ EFL] Tips for a Successful Presentation
Twelfth in a series of English language lessons from Jennifer Lebedev
Jennifer Lebedev (jenesl)     Print Article 
  Published 2008-09-19 09:13 (KST)   

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Tip No.1: Getting Started

At the beginning of your presentation, clearly state your topic and main points. An outline may be handed out or shown on a slide, but you shouldn't rely on written text to communicate what your presentation is going to be about. Address your audience and tell them your topic as well as the basic structure of your presentation. Here are some models:

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Model 1

"Today I'm going to speak to you about homeschooling in the US. First, I'll give a brief history of homeschooling in this country. Then, we'll examine homeschooling today: the reasons for it, some approaches to doing it, and regulations for its practice."

Model 2

"The focus of my presentation today is time management. I'll begin by identifying some common problems that result from the mismanagement of time, but my main goal is really to share recommendations. After taking a close look at three strategies for managing your time in the workplace, I'll invite you to share additional one you've used. This can lead into a discussion of which strategies work best in our environment and why."

Tip No.2: Staying Focused

Keep your audience on the same page, so to speak. Remind them of your plan, for example:

"So if we are all clear what the problem is, we'll now look at possible solutions. I'll present two and discuss their pros and cons."

"Before going on to the second point, let's summarize."

"Let's move on to the final point."

Staying focused also means providing verbal cues to help your listeners understand connections and sequences. Use CONNECTING PHRASES such as: therefore, however, nevertheless, likewise, and as a result. Use SEQUENCE WORDS such as: first, second, finally, next, then, and in the end.

Tip No.3: Clarifying

Hopefully, you've practiced your presentation and thought about how best to express your ideas. Even so, you may encounter some looks of confusion or outright statements of not understanding a given point. If this happens, you can restate your idea by saying:

"Let me rephrase that."

"In other words..."

"Allow me to clarify my point."

- [ESL/ EFL podcast] Tips for a Successful Presentation 

An original podcast for OMNI.
©2008 OhmyNews
Jennifer Lebedev is a teacher of English as a second and foreign language with 12 years experience. She has additional experience in teacher training and administration of an IEP and is a published author. Find more of her online English instruction on YouTube under the name "JenniferESL".
Other articles by reporter Jennifer Lebedev

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Seventeenth in a series of English language lessons from Jennifer Lebedev...
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