For some people public speaking can be terrifying and presenting on academic work in front of your classmates can be even worse. Sure, you’ve heard the age old advice to imagine everyone in the room naked or in their underwear. In case that doesn’t work for you, here are some helpful tips on how to get over your fear of public speaking and help you get through a successful presentation:
Make sure to learn the subject you are presenting on. The audience will be able to tell if you don’t know what you’re talking about. Reading words off a screen is completely different that talking to your audience. Be prepared for any questions and comments thrown your way at the end of your presentation.
Self Confidence is Key
Don’t rely on lengthy power points or loud videos to get your point across. While these tools may be helpful sometimes, it is more important to trust yourself and what you know to get your message out. Take a few deep breaths, mutter some positive words to yourself, and go for it. Approach the situation with the right attitude and you will do great!
Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously
If you mess up, that’s okay. Laugh it off, correct your mistake, and move on. Getting choked up over making a mistake during a presentation will only lead you down the wrong road for the remainder of the presentation and your audience will feel uncomfortable.
Practice Makes Perfect
Do not wing it. Set aside some time a few times before your actual presentation and practice it out loud. Ask a friend, classmate or roommate to observe and give feed back. You do not have to memorize word for word, but it is better to go into it knowing what you’re talking about. Remember, it is important to talk to your audience, not at them.
If you can, pick a subject that you care about. If not, try to find a way to care about it. If you are interested in the subject it won’t feel like work and you will actually enjoy putting the presentation together and sharing your knowledge with others. Make your presentation interactive with your audience and they can become passionate about the subject too!