Giving an academic presentation online

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this process, students will have demonstrated an ability to

  1. put together a well-structured, academic presentation on a topic from their own field of study
  2. deliver a presentation both in recorded format as well as ‘live’ over a teleconferencing tool (e.g. Skype, Zoom)
  3. give constructive feedback on another student’s presentation
  4. deliver a presentation both in recorded format as well as ‘live’ over a Skype connection or similar

Ways of working and activities

Week 1: Students reflect on their own weaknesses and strengths in preparing an academic presentation and delivering it online and share their ideas with their peers. They also choose a field-specific presentation topic.

Materials: background materials on effective presentations (both as links and in video format online). Discussion forum for sharing ideas.

Weeks 2-3: Students put together a presentation outline (template given) and receive written feedback on its effectiveness from their peers and from the teacher.

Materials: presentation outline template online, a forum for sharing and commenting on the outlines

Weeks 4-5: Students record a first version of their academic presentation and receive peer feedback on the structure and delivery in video format and also give it on another student’s presentation.

Materials: Recommendations on tools to use (e.g., Screencast-o-matic to record videos)  +  possible instructions on how to use them. Peer feedback instructions from the teacher. A forum (e.g., stream, flipgrid) for posting the videos and the video replies

Week 6: Students deliver their presentation ‘live’ in small groups over Skype or similar. After the presentation, the audience asks questions.

Materials: A meeting space online (Skype meeting or similar)

Week 7: Students reflect on the entire presentation process and on their actual presentation in writing.

Materials: this is done in writing in an online space. However, it could also be done orally in the form of a video or ‘live’ via a videoconferencing tool.

How are students supported?

Students are given

  • clear instructions in an online platform from which all other activities and resources are linked
  • background materials on effective presentation structure, outlining and delivery online in various formats (reading, videos, etc.)
  • guidelines for giving peer feedback in the form of a checklist
  • recommendations on tools they can use to record their presentations and links to resources on using these tools (students can also choose outside this list).

What kind of feedback do students get as their work progresses on their own skills and the development of their skills?

  • peer feedback on presentation outline, presentation rehearsal and final presentation
  • teacher feedback on the final presentation

How does it end? What happens next? How is the learning process and experience discussed and reflected upon?

Students write a self-reflection on the entire presentation process as well as on their actual presentation in their final portfolio. This could also be done in video format.