Choosing Titles And Words

Titles are important. A title states the topic of the slide as simply and as briefly as possible. Titles should look like titles: Perhaps yours will be enclosed in colored boxes, written in larger print or in all caps. At any rate, in some way your titles must signal clearly that they are titles and that the information they contain is vital to understanding the slide. Titles are clearer and more emphatic if they are written as topics, not as complete sentences.

Rarely if ever do good slides contain complete sentences anywhere, even in conclusions. Complete sentences on a slide put a presenter in an embarrassing position, because the speaker is then forced to read aloud to an audience. Reading sentences aloud to a literate audience is insulting to them. A literate audience has already seen the words and read them for themselves before you have finished saying them. Your voice then sounds repetitious and uninteresting, and the attention of the audience wanders at the very time you most wanted them to pay attention. So what is the solution? The solution is to use key words and phrases on the slides and let your voice complete the information, adding interest and details. Otherwise, especially in the conclusion, you will end on a slightly boring note. No one wants to complete a presentation on a boring note.

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