How to Talk

Last Update: 2 December 2011

Note: NEW or UPDATED material is highlighted

For further advice on success in your graduate program (and beyond), visit:
CSE 501: Graduate Studies in Computer Science, Directory of Documents

  1. How to Speak in Public:

    1. Rapaport, William J. (2010), "How to Give a Presentation"

    2. Radel, Jeff (1999), "Effective Presentations"

    3. Radel, Jeff (1999), "Developing a Poster Presentation", University of Kansas Medical Center.

    4. Parberry, Ian (1988), "How to Present a Paper in Theoretical Computer Science: A Speaker's Guide for Students", SIGACT News 19(2): 42-47.

    5. Germano, William (2003), "The Scholarly Lecture: How to Stand and Deliver", The Chronicle of Higher Education (28 November): B15.

    6. Winston, Patrick Henry, "Some Lecturing Heuristics"

    7. Donald, Bruce, "How to Give a Talk"

    8. Kosslyn, Stephen M. (2007), Clear and to the Point: 8 Psychological Principles for Compelling PowerPoint Presentations (New York: Oxford University Press); ISBN 978-0-10-532069-5.

      • A terrific guide for how to create good slide shows, written by a well-known cognitive scientist.

    9. Gaskins, Robert (2007), "PowerPoint at 20: Back to Basics", Communications of the ACM 50(12) (December): 15-17.

      • "Let simplicity inspire, and resist the lure of unreadable fonts, stock clip art, sound effects, and flying bullet points".
      • Advice from the inventor of PowerPoint!

      Don't make your slides look like this billboard ad!

      Pearls Before Swine

    10. DeFoe, Tory (2007), "The Truth Is, You Gave a Lousy Talk", Chronicle of Higher Education (21 December): C1,C4.

    11. Kerber, Linda K. (2008), "Conference Rules, Part I", Chronicle of Higher Education (14 March): C1, C4.

      • "Everything you need to know about introducing speakers and running a panel discussion."

    12. Kerber, Linda K. (2008), "Conference Rules, Part II", Chronicle of Higher Education (21 March): C1, C4.

      • "Everything you need to know about presenting a scholarly paper in public."

    13. Jaschik, Scott (2008), "Double Dipping in Conference Papers", Inside Higher Ed (20 May).

    14. Rudra, Atri (2009), "Guidelines for Paper Presentations"

      • An excellent set of advice on how to prepare slides ad how to give an oral presentation.

    15. Toor, Rachel (2009), "‘I Just Wrote This Last Night’", Chronicle of Higher Education (7 August): A32–A33.

    16. Wailgum, Thomas (2010), "How Steve Jobs Beats Presentation Panic", Macworld (October): 54–55.

    17. Neville-Neil, George V. (2010), "Kode Vicious: Presenting Your Project", Communications of the ACM 53(8) (August): 33–34.

      • One of the best (and shortest) articles on how to give a presentation. Should be required reading!

    18. NEW Farkas, David K. (2005), "Understanding and Using PowerPoint", STC Annual Conference Proceedings, May 8–11, pp. 313–320.

    19. NEW Farkas, David K. (2007), "Effective Presentations with PowerPoint: 24 Suggestions", slides annotated in notes pane.

  2. English as a Second Language

    1. Resources for English as a Second Language"

      • Description from The Scout Report—June 2, 2006: As more and more persons are seeking high-quality English as a Second Language (ESL) resources, a number of sites have sprung up to provide just such materials. One notable site is, which provides grammar glossaries, reference sheets on irregular verbs, phrasal verbs and idioms, teacher handouts, and ESL forums. The forums are particularly useful, as registered users can post questions in the "Ask a Teacher!" feature, and receive a response from one of their team of expert advisors. The articles area contains short pieces on using punctuation properly, teaching English in South Asia, and formal letter writing. The site also has its own weblog, which contains brief musings on various elements of the English language that may be helpful both for ESL teachers and those seeking to learn the language.

    2. ESL Cyber Listening Lab

      • Description from The Scout Report—June 30, 2006: Developed by an educator with a series of experiences spent educating persons in the art of learning English, this website provides a multimedia experience for those seeking to learn the language. The focus on the site is most definitely on developing users' listening skills, and it provides dozens of helpful audio features that quizzes students on topics such as renting an apartment, understanding credit cards, and making doctor's appointments. Along with these more practical skills, another section of quizzes deals with subjects that students might encounter in other situations, such as the TOEFL or more advanced conversations. The multimedia experience of the site is greatly enhanced through video presentations of long conversations on topics such as family history, investing, and solar eclipses.

Text copyright © 2006–2011 by William J. Rapaport (
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