Developing an Academic Presentation, Part 1: Documenting the Process

Can you imagine presenting to a crowd like this?! The horror…for presenter and the audience…

In about two months, I will be presenting at the Australian Conference of Science and Medicine in Sport, taking place as part of the be active 2012 Congress.  Safe to say that I am pretty excited for this presentation (“The design and implementation of a novel method for quantifying training loads in elite rowing: the T2minute method”), because it is the first podium presentation of my PhD work at an external (read: non-Deakin) event.

As organised and meticulous as I am, I realised that I have not documented my workflow for developing a presentation, and so the idea was born to document my process of building a presentation “from scratch”.  Over the coming weeks, I’ll be posting updates about each stage of the process – from the initial drafts, to practice runs, revising and refining, and finally the conference presentation itself.  I hope the series will be insightful, both for myself in terms of increasing my awareness of things I do well and don’t do well, and also for other PhD students that might come across my blog.  Would love to hear from others (students, early career researchers, established academics) about how you go about preparing a presentation of your research, so feel free to leave comments on this blog or send an email to jac [AT]!

Stage: Initial Draft

Progress to date: Abstract accepted for podium presentation; yet to start preparing presentation (e.g., slides, delivery).

As with any research, there are so many stories to tell from the data.  The craft in being an effective researcher is being able to identify and convey the salient messages, identifying the problems that make you go “Hmm…” and the solutions that make you go “Aha!”.  So the task today is to begin brainstorming the key messages from my work.

And that can mean only one thing…

Time to get my sketchnotes on!

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