FOAMonthly: Resuscitate your slides!
Resuscitate your slides!
No more death by PowerPoint. We have all sat through PowerPoint presentations overrun by animations and littered with barely readable text and clip-art. Well, no more. Whether you are guilty of poor slide design yourself or interested in coaching faculty, residents or students on designing powerful slide presentations, the Top 10 Slide Tips from Garr Reynolds is a great place to start. Garr Reynolds is the author of Presentation Zen (an excellent read on slide design) and hosts a blog on professional presentation design. In his easily digestible and immediately applicable Top 10 Tips Garr Reynolds reminds us of the purpose of slides and provides easy-to-follow recommendations on how to make your slides more visually appealing and impactful. Those that resonated most strongly with me were that the audience is there to hear you speak, not read your slides. Your slides should be essentially meaningless without you. To put it another way, if you properly design the slides for the talk, the slides should not be usable as a handout. More is not better so choose your graphics carefully and with purpose. Photographs of people are great to evoke emotion. Fonts and colors impact your message. Use sans serif fonts and whatever font you use, stick with it throughout the entire presentation. Use these tips and share liberally with your faculty, residents, and students to help prevent needless death by PowerPoint and to bring new life to educational talks.
Kendra Parekh, MD
Director of Undergraduate Medical Education
Vanderbilt University Medical Center