How Can I Make Thoughts Visible?

Man Sleeping at National Gallery

Preparing And Presenting PowerPoint Slides


Preparing a presentation is all about the purpose. All of the audience must be able to recognise and read the information easily. Glamorous works of art are not necessary. The following points are important:

  • Text pitch must be large enough, do not use ‘normal’ pitch (up to 14)
  • Use mixed case
  • If using drawings, draw the contours, not the details as this becomes illegible and confusing
  • Make the slide clear
  • If possible, use different colours but don’t overdo it
  • Put only a few points on one slide. Rule of thumb: a maximum of seven points, of up to six words, per slide
  • Make your slides visual: combine text and pictures / graphics.

Presenting The Slides

In order to make the preparation worth it, slides must also be correctly presented and used. Here are a few tips:

  • Pictures / graphics which need completion are tempting and encourage participation from the group
  • Highlighting points, key words, graphs etc. should be done from the projector / computer rather than the screen
  • The speed of slide change has to be kept in check when using prepared slides; it is tempting to go fast and this rapid change distracts the participants’ ability to remember things
  • Speak to the participants and not to the screen / computer
  • Be sure that what you say complements the slide being shown; avoid keeping a slide on show when the topic has long gone by.