Slide decks and other stylised academic dominance displays

June 1, 2015 — January 9, 2022

Figure 1

Presentations: The quantum of information for all parts of society for which the quantum of information is not a tweet or a Facebook status update or a preprint.

Powerpoint presentations are already purported to have various oft-cited defects but these I will not discuss here. In my trade, if they be evil they are also necessary. I’m all about harm minimisation of the evil, by minimising the amount of time I must waste on it.

So how do I actually give a good presentation?

1 Tools

See presentation tools.

2 Pedagogic considerations

Figure 2

On communicating to my peers and students.

Assertion-evidence is one school of presentation aesthetic (Garner and Alley 2013, 2016).

See perhaps, Dave Richeson, How to Present a Mathematical Proof or Problem. Popular: Patrick Winston’s How to speak self-demonstrating lecture best practice.

There is a tension between the need to keep slides text-filled to serve as a document of a lecture for reference, and a minimalist jumping-off point for thought.

3 Philosophy

29 Bullets is an essay by Powerpoint wiz Russell Davies in an amusing… ah just go read it.

4 Pitching

Selling my work to non-specialists

Emma Donnelly of Comm-it has been coaching me on this.

5 References

Garner, and Alley. 2013. How the design of presentation slides affects audience comprehension: A case for the assertion-evidence approach.” International Journal of Engineering Education.
———. 2016. Slide structure can influence the presenter’s understanding of the presentation’s content.” International Journal of Engineering Education.
Rubenson. 2023. How Not to Chatter Like a Toddler When Giving a Scientific Presentation.” Nature.