As an international student, a presentation means different in some extent compared with native students. Language can be the first gap. Humor and flexibly are also counted as the other difficulties due to language. From my own experience, there are still a lot of things you can work hard on so that you can still provide a proper and good presentation to your audiences. Combined with several good points from the article Matt Abrahams: Tips and techniques for more confident and compelling presentations, I would like to recommend several techniques to non-native speakers that are really effective for providing a good presentation.
- Clear pronunciation. Probably your pronunciation is not that standard as native speakers. But, it is your responsibility to make sure that your pronunciation is clear and the speaking speed is proper. And you know, the faster you speak, the higher risk of making grammar mistakes.
- Use variation in sight and sound to make your speak memorable. Everyone knows that we should make eye contact with audiences. It is the most important and effective way to connect with your audiences to feel their attitude and reflections. For non-native speakers, it will be much more helpful if you vary your voice and sight when you tend to speak key words.
- The right way to practice. I agree with this idea entirely. An effective practice will deliver a good presentation. Matt Abrahams suggests that “many presenters don’t practice properly…they simply mentally rehearse or flip through a slide deck, passive approaches that don’t really simulate the conditions of a presentation.” Native speakers should practice well not mention to non native speakers. A good practice not only can give you confidence but also can increase your ability to make immediate response. I strongly recommend that you should stand up or even stand in front of a mirror to present. That will also help you to remember what you intend to say efficiently. And remember, thinking through a presentation by brain is not enough.
- Knowing the power of the paraphrase. It is worthy to be a good habit to keep for international students and non-native speakers. When you face a long or hard question, your proper paraphrase will help both of you and the questioner a lot. After your paraphrase, you can make sure that you indeed understood the question correctly so that the asker can exactly get what he/she wants. Moreover, it helps you to think. You can think first while you paraphrasing in order to have a clearer structure. You know, paraphrasing is not counted as a very mentally taxing. You can just start your paraphrasing with “You are asking about…” “Alright, you’d like to know about…” “As you mentioned….”
These four techniques have helped me a lot and I will keep follow them. They are treater for me. I hope they will help you also.
Don’t forget, smile and take a deep breath.