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Research Conference Help (URC & GRC)

Tips and resources to help you create an effective research poster and prepare to give an oral presentation at the URC or GRC

Presentation Tools

PowerPoint, Prezi, or Google Slides are some of the many tools you may use to create your presentations 

Here are some basic tips to remember when using any of them:

  • Include a title slide that covers the topic/presentation name and the presenter's name
  • Use bullet points; try to avoid complete and long sentences. Stick to simple concepts and ideas on the slides.
  • Use large, clean font and keep it uniformed. Avoid varied sizes and styles of font. Stay away from anything that is hard to read and more ornamental. Stick to Sans Serif fonts and minimum 20 point size font for body text. 
  • When selecting/creating a theme use contrasting colors for text and background; for example if using dark text pick a lighter color background. Keep the theme uniform throughout the presentation.
  • Check your presentation for accessibility. Use alt-text for images. 
  • Try to refrain from using animated transitions or other special effects. Too many can be distracting and take away from the information being presented.
  • When picking images and graphs keep it simple. It should not be text heavy and should be able to be seen and processed quickly. 
  • If covering anything graphic or distressing include a warning slide before hand. Give people some time to turn away or leave the room if need be. 
  • Use inserted videos sparingly in presentations. They can interrupt the momentum of a presentation. If using a video try to keep it below 1-2 minutes. 
  • Be sure to cite your sources.

Additional resources:

Public Speaking Tips

Here are some tips to help with public speaking: 

  • It's okay to be nervous! It's normal.
  • Practice as much as you can.
  • Glance at your notes, but don't read from them.
  • Try to avoid caffeine before the presentation.
  • Drink water before so your mouth isn't dry.
  • Wear something comfortable that makes you feel confident.
  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart to avoid rocking back and forth. 
  • Make eye contact with audience members for about three seconds each. 
  • Try to anticipate audience questions in advance. 
  • Learn about your presentation space before the day you present. 
  • Warm-up.
  • Have fun with it.

Additional resources:

Technical Preparation and Tips

Technology is a vital aspect of any good presentation

Here are some tips and tricks to remember:

  • Check your lighting, make sure you are not backlit.
  • Make sure your Presentation is the correct orientation. 
  • Before starting check your microphone and audio to make sure everything is working.
  • Limit as much background noise as possible before starting.
  • Be sure to do a dry run so you understand how to transition slides and to check if there are any errors.
  • If presenting virtually focus your look at the camera, try to set your video camera at eye level so it is easier. 
  • Make sure your presentation will work offline just in case internet connectivity is weak or unavailable. 
  • Be sure to have a backup copy of the presentation available and ready to go if the first is corrupted or has major missing elements.

Additional resources