Book: Presentation Skills for Students

Presentation Skills for Students

If monkey see, monkey do, then don’t read this book.
139 pages, ★

I learn by seeing and doing. I copy. Therefore, if a teacher uses a bullet lists on a PowerPoint presentation to tell me how to deliver an eloquent, engaging speech, then I’m really not going to learn. Actually, all I’d learn is how not to speak.

Presentation Skills for Students is a written embodiment of the PowerPoint bullet-list culture that most of us detest. This book tells me to speak up, project my voice, choose suitable fonts, colours and graphics, blah blah blah, but doesn’t deliver the information in a way that I find in any way engaging: it’s littered with dull, bulleted lists and emphasises theory over practice, which ironically contradicts the book’s purpose—to train good speakers.

Watch Obama’s speeches if you want to improve your speaking skills. Here’s an excellent one below. Learn from the best!

If you still insist on learning the theory, then watch this TED video as well, called “Talk Nerdy To Me”.

Presentation Skills for Students reminds me of the Fight Club corporate meeting scene with Microsoft (or in the film, a generic company), where the protagonist’s boss tinkers with the colours of his slides—and the leader replies, “efficiency is key, people”. The best part is that the author, not the character, is being ironic. Presentation Skills for Students is an equally pointless display of procrastination. Watch Obama instead. ★★

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