Avoiding the Pitfalls of Bad Slides

Avoiding the Pitfalls of Bad Slides
 All schools, colleges or universities often ask
students to create a PowerPoint presentation for a
specific or final project.
 It could be a big part of your final grade.
 Planning
 Outlines
 Slide Structure
 Fonts
 Color
 Background
 Graphs
 Spelling and Grammar
 Conclusions
 Questions
 The first step to ensuring a good grade on a
PowerPoint presentation for class is to clearly
understand the instructions provided by the
 Make sure to hit all of the requirements.
 Make your 2nd or 3rd slide an outline of your
 Follow the order of your outline for the rest of the
 Only place main points on the outline slide
 Ex: Use the titles of each slide as main points
 Limit bullet points and text!
 A BAD example:
Your presentation is for the benefit of the audience, but boring an
audience with bullet point after bullet point is of little benefit to them.
Which brings us to the issue of text. The best slides may have no text at
all. This may sound insane given the dependency of text slides today,
but the best PowerPoint slides will be virtually meaningless with out
the narration (that is you).
This page contains too many words for a presentation slide making it
difficult both for your audience to read and for you to present each
point. In short, your audience will spend too much time trying to read
this paragraph instead of listening to you.
A GOOD example:
 Show one point at a time:
 Helps audience concentrate on what you are saying
 Prevents audience from reading ahead
 Helps you keep your presentation focused
 Do not use animation on every slide.
 Some animation is a good thing, but stick to the most
subtle and professional .
 A simple "Wipe Left-to-Right" (from the "Animations"
menu) is good for a bullet point, but a "Move" or "Fly"
for example is too tedious and slow.
 Use the same font set throughout your entire slide
presentation, and use no more than two
complementary fonts (e.g., Arial and Arial Bold).
 Use different size fonts for main points and
secondary points.
 Make sure the text can be read from the back of
the room.
If you use a small font, your audience won’t be able to read what you have written.
 Don’t use a complicated font.
 Color evokes feelings. Color is emotional. The
right color can help persuade and motivate.
 If you will be presenting in a dark room then a
dark background (dark blue, grey, etc.) with white
or light text will work fine.
 If you plan to keep most of the lights on (which is
highly advisable) then a white background with
black or dark text works much better
A BAD example:
 Using a font color that does not contrast with the
background color is hard to read.
 Using color for decoration is distracting and annoying.
 Using a different color for each point is unnecessary
 Using a different color for secondary points is also
 Trying to be creative can also be bad.
 Avoid backgrounds that are distracting or
difficult to read from
 Always be consistent with the background that
you use.
 Always be asking yourself, "How much detail do I
need?" Presenters are usually guilty of including too
much data in their on-screen charts.
 Always title your graphs
 A BAD example:
 Minor gridlines are unnecessary
 Font is too small.
 Too many colors .
 Title is missing.
 Proof your slides for:
 speling mistakes
 the use of of repeated words
 grammatical errors you might have make
 If English is not your first language, please have
someone else check your presentation!
 Use an effective and strong closing.
 Your audience is likely to remember your
last words.
 End your presentation
with a simple question
slide to:
 Invite your audience to
ask questions.
 Provide a visual aid
during question period.
 Avoid ending a
presentation abruptly.
 http://mason.gmu.edu/~montecin/powerpoint.html
 College Student PowerPoint Presentation Tips: Slideshows
for Public Speaking and Business Class Final Projects |
Suite101.com http://lenagott.suite101.com/college-studentpowerpoint-presentation-tips-a72924#ixzz1bl88Uu4F
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QF2T8x7fDbg&feat
 http://www.garrreynolds.com/Presentation/slides.ht
Creating Effective PowerPoint
Presentations Assignment
Click on the link below “Life After Death” by PowerPoint and watch the video.
After watching the video, your assignment is to create your own Power Point Presentation taking into consideration the specific ideas
covered in this online Personal Empowerment Session and the video you just watched.
Requirements for this assignment:
1. Pick one of the following topics for your PP : The Importance of Going To College, My Career Goal, My Ideal College or My Favorite
Thing To Do In My Spare Time.
Your PP should include at least 10 slides :
1st slide: title of presentation
2nd slide : outline of your presentation.
3rd – 8th slides: content based on your topic.
9th slide: conclusion
10th slide: References or works cited in your presentation.
3. Include at least two images or graphs in your presentation.
4. Make sure to take into consideration the slide structures, fonts, grammar and other important ideas learned.
5. Show your presentation to a T/M, once they approve it you may email to your Counseling Coordinator.

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