Creating and Using Overheads

Emphasize Key Points

When you are driving, street signs identify where you are. Similarly, bulleted key points serve as street signs throughout your presentation. They also help mark transitions clearly and reinforce your summary and conclusions. However, avoid wordy, cluttered visuals. You should not read your presentation from the visual. To read more, choose any of the items below:

The Rules of Sixes

Make sure your visuals communicate just enough information. Your audience will follow your visual with ease if you limit the text to six words per line and six lines per visual.

Minimum Type Size

To be sure everyone can read your visuals, the minimum type size you should use is 24 point. For transparencies, a 24 point, lower case "x" would be 1/3" high. Using this size and following the Rules of Sixes will result in clean, readable visuals.

Font Style

Although it may be tempting to make your visuals unique by using cursive or slanted fonts, you should avoid fancy fonts. Choose a clean, simple font style, such as the sans-serif fonts. Your visuals must be legible!

Visual Consistency

Maintain a consistent visual style. Font type, size, and color should not vary from visual to visual. You want to be sure your audience is listening to you instead of analyzing your visuals.

Masking Considerations

When you view a film, what you see corresponds with what you hear. Likewise, your presentation should correspond with your visuals. Make sure each key point is revealed as it is discussed.

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