How to give a presentation in English - Session 8

By Viv Quarry (


Referring to visuals

A good presentation which includes visuals will be much more effective than one without.

Visuals help focus the attention of your audience, reinforce your main ideas, illustrate points which are hard to visualise and involve and motivate the audience.


    Preparing the audience for a visual.

This ensures your audence is alert and ready and gives you time to position the visual.


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Now, let's look at the position for....                            For.... the situation is very different


Now, I'll show you the....                                            Let's move on now and look at the figures for....


The next slide shows....                                               If we now turn to the....


    Commenting on visuals.

Explain what the visual shows. This help focus attention and avoid misunderstandings.

You can also focus on a particular feature by using a dramatic piece of vocabulary.


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This chart compares the....                                                      As you / we can see ....


The upper part of the slide gives information about....   I'd like to draw your attention to....


You can see here the ....                                                         It is important/interesting to notice that...


The position of this equipment is extremely dangerous.


The sudden rise in prices was quite unexpected.


    Advice on using visuals in a presentation.


1       Keep headlines and other information on the visual to a minimum.


2       Only point out the key features or information which you want your audience to focus on.


3       Briefly restate key facts from the visual.




4       Add other related information not on the visual in order to make further points.


5       Give interpretations and/or any comments.






Prepare three visuals (a graph, a table, and a list of points) on a work-related topic, or use a visual from a presentation you have already given. Use the framework below to help you plan your commentary.


1       Prepare the audience for the visual and state its purpose.


2       Draw the audience's attention to the first point.


3       Give your interpretation / comments.


4       Focus the audience on your second point.


5       Give your interpretation / comments.




Is there the right amount of information on the visual?


Does the layout help the audience to understand the point of the visual?


Is the lettering clear and easy to read from a distance?


Do the colours you've used really work?


Are there any spelling or grammatical mistakes?




Now record yourself presenting the three visuals.





Did you prepare the audience by telling them what the visual was about in advance?


Did you direct the audience's attention to the main points on the visual?


Did you rephrase the main information you wanted the audience to focus on?


Did you analyse and comment on the information?:




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Giving presentations 9