College and University Public Speaking
If you can survive an active social life, getting a degree and getting a job without having to speak in public, please let me know where you work! Because for most of us, public speaking is an inevitable part of your life.
Why is public speaking important?
Effective speaking is a cornerstone of both great career and successful networking as it allows you to effectively deliver your ideas, convince people and create a lasting impression.
Qualities of a good public speaker include several important aspects:
- Knowledge and expertise;
- Ability to charm and tell a story;
- And desire to share.
You have to balance everything, as noon really likes the all-knows that are too proud to answer your question, neither would a no-nothing immerses the knowledgeable audience. Let us walk you throw the most important aspect of your preparation for public speaking.
Public speaking training on your own
As a part of the process, you will have to prepare yourself for the presentation or public speaking. One of the most important stages is to get comfortable with the idea of actually being in front of the crowd, and in order to achieve this, you should:
Plan your time and resources wisely:
Prepare to your presentation or public speaking as if you were given a part in the play. If you are able to learn the lines, you are not going to get a round of applause, and the audience always knows when you haven’t learned your part.
The more you prepare, the less will you think of the presentation. Some people say it helps if you try a typecast on. Think of yourself as someone else (or at least a better and more successful version of yourself) and act respectively.
Plan everything that needs to be done in order to have more time to deal with everything on your list.
Plan your outfit for the big day. If you have any doubts, take a picture and consult with someone. Choose comfortable shoes and have a handkerchief in your pocket. Plan your eating routine, however, try to avoid drinking too much water at least 2 hours prior to the speaking time.
Prepare an outline for your speech:
- While we believe you should memorize your speech (if you are not an expert on the subject), it is always a good idea to have an outline to be able to keep up with the flow of your speech.
- Try to make the flow of the speech both logical and natural, so you can remain calm even if you forget something.
- Prepare a strong and catchy thesis statement that you will introduce in the begging.
- An outline will help you get back on track if you were asked questions and dragged away from the subject.
Practice, practice, and more practice:
- The more you practice, the better will you memorize the text.
- Record yourself speaking both on tape and on video. The audio file will help you analyze your tone, emotion patterns, and tempo, while the video file will give you information about your body language and general impression;
- Practice to speak slowly, as you will probably speed up once you are on stage (the common results of the nervous condition).
Breathe, hydrate and try to smile:
- If you feel on edge, take a deep breath and let it slow down your heart rate. It will also help you clear your thoughts.
- Water will help you keep consciousness and stay more focused.
- Smile. Scientists say that even broad and artificial smile worn for at least 5 minutes will help you boost your confidence and improve your mood.
Rest well and dress up:
- If you are going to present your speech in the morning, make sure to have a good sleep.
- Do whatever makes you all and happy if it helps you relax and steel well.
- Plan your outfit and hang it up the night before. Dress well and appropriately in order to make a great impression.
Public speaking skills for students
Once you have entered the building, there are certain useful skills you may need along with some tips you may find helpful:
- Do some vocal drills to warm up your vocal chords. This is extremely important if you are going to speak without any microphone.
- Remember a tongue twister to loosen your jaw and math muscles.
- Do some simple stretching not to feel stiff during your presentation.
- Even if your audience may know you, it is a simple way to begin and lose the tension.
- If appropriate, begin with a joke or anecdote that is related to the topic.
- Engage the crowd and help them focus. It is also a great time to clarify when the questions can be asked.
Present your thesis statement:
- Inform people about the topic and introduce the background (if there is any).
- Move to the first of your presentation or speech.
- Don’t forget that you have an outline to help you up.
Consider your body language:
- Do not simply state into the wall, engage in the eye contact with various people (however avoid staring at them for too long, as it may be creepy and inappropriate).
- Do not cross your arms and legs, avoid rocking back and forth as it signals that you are nervous.
Control your articulation:
- Do not mumble an murmur while you are speaking, even if you lost the track of your thoughts. Excuse yourself and take a moment to get back to the last moment you can recollect;
- Do not forget to breathe and make pauses, as it will help you save your energy and keep your audience engaged.
- Pay attention to your tone. Neither would you like to sound like a robot, nor as a squeaky little bird.
Follow your outline:
- In order to have enough time, make sure to regularly check our outline. Some people say it helps them to have a timer on your phone running, so they know exactly where they are and how much time they have.
- If you are on the stage, feel free to step away from the pulpit, however, let it remain your safe place, so you can go back, glance at your outline and move on.
Leave a great impression:
- The most amazing speakers are the ones enjoying the process and having fun.
- Let people ask you questions but never lie or be afraid to admit to not knowing the answer.
- Conclude your speech by summarizing the key points of your talk; thank people for taking time to listen to you and ask questions.
As you may see, effective speaking skills are something you can easily master on your own, if you give yourself time to prepare. You may watch some TED talks on the importance of public speaking or look for the webinars on the subject. However, we believe that the key to your successful public speaking is staying calm while being passionate about the topic.
If you need an advice on how to improve public speaking skills in English (which is extremely important for foreign and exchange students) just drop us a line.