Oral Presentation Tips

Here are some tips and suggestions for FYP and FYT oral presentations.

  • Every FYP or FYT student must speak during presentations, and his/her performance will affect both his/her personal grade and the group's grade, so FYP groups with 2-4 members should try to plan the presentation so that every member speaks around the same amount of time and speaks about areas of the project that he/she worked on and/or is confident about.
  • In April, check the FYP presentation schedule or the FYT presentation schedule.
  • Use a nice-looking Google Slides or PowerPoint template to boost your presentation.
  • Practice several times beforehand, making sure every group member speaks loudly, clearly and confidently.
  • If you take too much time to give your presentation, your advisor may simply ask you to stop before you get to the end, so time yourself when you practice and cut out the least important parts, if necessary.
  • Be prepared to answer around 2-10 questions from your advisor and the second reader, and discuss in advance who will answer which questions.
  • Encourage your audience to ask you questions at any time; pause every few minutes and ask, "Any questions?"
  • At the very beginning, make sure your audience clearly understands the goal of your project.
  • If you did something difficult, be sure to mention it.
  • If you did something creative, be sure to illustrate it.
  • If you have 100 things you could say, pick the most important and/or interesting 10 or 20 and organize them logically.
  • A pre-recorded demo video may be helpful to supplement a live demo.
  • If you record a demo video, make it realistic.
  • Be sure to test application, presentation and/or videos beforehand in the venue or on Zoom, as appropriate. It's very embarrassing if you have to say, "But it worked the other day! Really!"
  • Have a backup plan in case your PC crashes. For example, be able to run your application, presentation and/or videos from another PC or from a web server.
  • Avoid boring your audience. If you're bored giving the presentation, the audience will be bored watching it.
  • Look professional.
  • It is possible that other students or other people may watch your presentation, either during the scheduled time or later on video, so about what you want them to see and remember.
  • Consider inviting your parents to watch! This may be the climax of your education at HKUST, and they are probably very proud of you.
  • Ask your FYP advisor if he or she has any special expectations or advice for your FYP presentation.

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