Speak with conviction as if you really believe in what you are saying. Persuade your audience effectively. Speak loudly and clearly. Sound confident. Do not mumble. If you made an error, correct it, and continue. No need to make excuses or apologize profusely.
The material you present orally should have the same ingredients as that which are required for a written research paper, i.e. a logical progression from INTRODUCTION (Thesis statement) to BODY (strong supporting arguments, accurate and up-to-date information) to CONCLUSION (re-state thesis, summary, and logical conclusion).
Do not read from notes for any extended length of time although it is quite acceptable to glance at your notes infrequently. Maintain sincere eye contact with your audience. Use the 3-second method, e.g. look straight into the eyes of a person in the audience for 3 seconds at a time. Have direct eye contact with a number of people in the audience, and every now and then glance at the whole audience while speaking. Use your eye contact to make everyone in your audience feel involved. Speak to your audience, listen to their questions, respond to their reactions, adjust and adapt.
Pause. Allow yourself and your audience a little time to reflect and think. Don’t race through your presentation and leave your audience, as well as yourself, feeling out of breath.
Add humor whenever appropriate and possible. Keep audience interested throughout your entire presentation. Remember that an interesting speech makes time fly, but a boring speech is always too long to endure even if the presentation time is the same.
When using audio-visual aids to enhance your presentation, be sure all necessary equipment is set up and in good working order prior to the presentation. If possible, have an emergency backup system readily available. Check out the location ahead of time to ensure seating arrangements for audience, whiteboard, blackboard, lighting, location of projection screen, sound system, etc. are suitable for your presentation.
Have handouts ready and give them out at the appropriate time. Tell audience ahead of time that you will be giving out an outline of your presentation so that they will not waste time taking unnecessary notes during your presentation. Do not torture your audience by putting a lengthy document in tiny print on an overhead and reading it out to them.
Know when to STOP talking. Use a timer or the microwave oven clock to time your presentation when preparing it at home. Just as you don’t use unnecessary words in your written paper, you don’t bore your audience with repetitious or unnecessary words in your oral presentation. To end your presentation, summarize your main points in the same way as you normally do in the CONCLUSION of a written paper. Remember, however, that there is a difference between spoken words appropriate for the ear and formally written words intended for reading. Terminate your presentation with an interesting remark or an appropriate punch line. Leave your listeners with a positive impression and a sense of completion. Do not belabor your closing remarks.