We seem to have an unavoidable relationship with public speaking throughout our lives. From our kindergarten years, when our presentations are nothing more than a few seconds of reciting cute words in front of our class…
...till our grown up years, when things get a little more serious, and the success of our presentations may determine getting funds for our business, or obtaining an academic degree when defending our thesis.
Related Read: Investor Deck: Best Practices to Present Your Business
By the time we reach our mid 20’s, we become worryingly used to evaluations based on our presentations. Yet, for some reason, we’re rarely told the traits upon which we are being evaluated. Most colleges and business schools for instance use a PowerPoint presentation rubric to evaluate their students. Funny thing is, they’re not usually that open about sharing it with their students (as if that would do any harm!).
“We’re used to giving presentations, yet we’re rarely told the traits upon which we’re being evaluated.
Well, we don’t believe in shutting down information. Quite the contrary: we think the best way to practice your speech is to know exactly what is being tested! By evaluating each trait separately, you can:
I’ve assembled a simple Presentation Rubric, based on a great document by the NC State University, and I've also added a few rows of my own, so you can evaluate your presentation in pretty much any scenario!
The Rubric contemplates 7 traits, which are as follows:
Now let's break down each trait so you can understand what they mean, and how to assess each one:
The Rubric is pretty self explanatory, so I'm just gonna give you some ideas as to how to use it. The ideal scenario is to ask someone else to listen to your presentation and evaluate you with it. The less that person knows you, or what your presentation is about, the better.
As we don't always have someone to rehearse our presentations with, a great way to use the Rubric is to record yourself (this is not Hollywood material so an iPhone video will do!), watching the video afterwards, and evaluating your presentation on your own. You'll be surprised by how different your perception of yourself is, in comparison to how you see yourself on video.
Related read: Webinar - Public Speaking and Stage Presence: How to wow?
It will be fairly easy to evaluate each trait! The mere exercise of reading the Presentation Rubric is an excellent study on presenting best practices.
If you're struggling with any particular trait, I suggest you take a look at our Academy Channel where we discuss how to improve each trait in detail!
It's not always easy to objectively assess our own speaking skills. So the next time you have a big presentation coming up, use this Rubric to put yourself to the test!
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