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A visual aid is anything which your audience can see, and which helps them to follow your spoken presentation. In addition to aiding understanding, visual aids can also help to keep the audience's attention and interest by adding variety to the presentation style (however interesting the speaker, it is difficult to remain interested for long if that speaker does nothing but talk to the audience). The most common types of visual aids in seminar presentations are:
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There are many types of information which can be presented using visual aids. These include:
Remember that visual aids must be visual. If possible, use pictures or diagrams or graphs rather than text. Think carefully about size and colour. Make sure the visual aids can be seen by the audience at the back of the room.
Remember also that your visual aids must aid your presentation. Slides must show the key points that you want to make. You will add comments while you speak, but if the audience can see your main points, this will help them to follow what you are saying.
It is important, when using visual aids, to refer to them appropriately. Don't just read from your slide: turn and face the audience. You should also make sure you use the correct language. Examples of language to refer to visual aids are given below. More can be found in the language for presentations section.
|Diagrams/ images are big enough to be seen from the back|
|Not too much data in diagrams/tables|
|Not too much text on one page (6 by 6 rule)|
|PowerPoint colour is OK (light background, dark letters)|
|Visual aids cover main points of presentation|
|You have a visual (PowerPoint slide/ whiteboard) which will show the structure of the presentation|
|All images give useful information|
|Not too many slides/ images/ handouts|