How To Prepare Slides For Your Thesis Defense
The thesis defense is possibly one of the scariest and most intimidating situations that a student will ever find themselves in. There might have been times when you were writing it that you felt as if your life was going to end. The realisation that you are then going to have to come before a panel of experts and defend it can drive people to their wits end. I am sure that you have already fully familiarised yourself with the steps that you will need to take in your defense. So, I am going to focus simply on the preparation of your slides for the purposes of this article.
How much time do you have?
Before you start getting down to the specifics; the nitty gritty of preparing your slides, the very first thing that you need to establish is whether or not there happens to be any time constraints. It may be that several students will be going before the board on the same morning and therefore you might have a very restricted time slot. Failure to adhere to this will be disastrous.
Build your framework
The best place to start gathering the framework for your presentation is the introduction as this should effectively outline your whole argument. Go through it several times until you are sure that you have picked out the the best possible points.
Use different fonts
Unlike say a novel, where you might use the same font throughout, in your presentation you will need to be prepared to use several different ones. For example:
- The title will need to stand out
- Your name and the date, while relevant don’t need to be as bold
These come upfront, before you get into the main body of your presentation. Don’t forget to include anyone that has helped you. Ensure that your lecturer gets a special mention.
This needs to be tight, brief and confined to just one slide. Make sure you work and rework this if necessary to get it down to the right size.
Put your research into context
This is INCREDIBLY important, as you are getting to the thrust of your argument here. The reason why the professionals are in the room with you grilling you as you defend your thesis!
Tie it all up neatly
Chances are your entire presentation isn’t going to last more than a few minutes. Although it might feel like a lifetime, you simply need to invest enough time and energy into doing a proper job.