When you’re preparing your university or college presentation, graphic design matters. The following guidelines will help your presentation stand out amidst classmate competition and ensure you not only a passing grade, but also an attractive presentation.
- You want to keep the design of your presentation consistent with the subject matter and your university’s guidelines. Check your professor’s instructions and either download on of the many free presentation templates online or create your own. The template creates a “branding” to your presentation. Students and teachers are able to get an immediate feel for the tone of your presentation by the design of your template. This aides you in getting your messaging across more quickly, and helping you to get that messaging to stick in the minds of your audience members.
- Take time. It’s ok to take your time when it comes to graphic design. Presentation templates allow you to speed the process up by having a one-size-fits-all graphic design base to customize upon. This is nice for you, the designer, and will serve your project well, creating a basic color and design scheme. But then there is the process of customization. You are filling in content and adjusting the basic template to fit your needs. The customization is what helps you get your point across and show that you care about your subject matter. Take your time customizing your the header and footer of each slide. Add graphics instead of words–charts, graphs, infographics, etc. These will provide an image instead of just a stream of consciousness. Work your way through each slide and enjoy the design process. If you let yourself take your time, it can actually be fun.
- Concentrate on content. When you’re designing your presentation, you want to make sure the content is front and center. Edit down your wording so that it is short and to the point. You want to create short and sweet information soundbites for your audience so they are able to come away with what is most important. Graphic design is fun, and it can often be the funnest part of the job. But you have to also make sure to create clean and readable content to match it.
- When in doubt, go minimalistic. Presentations in college or university usually offer up a lot of information at once. Teachers will often themselves break this rule–instead opting for packing in as much information into a class as they can. With presentations you want to focus on your main points. And you want your template/design to serve these main points. As you design and write in your presentation, you are inevitably going to experience doubt as to what to include/ not include. When in doubt, leave it out. The simpler, the better when it comes to graphic design. It will be easier on the eyes of your audience, and you. As you talk your way through the presentation you can always embellish points with your own conversation. The design and content of the presentation itself, though, should be short and to the point.