Keep it simple. Your goal is to show what you cannot say. Remember that you
have to be able to manage the visual aid and the speech. Do not be overcome by
trying to run a multi-media presentation. This is a speech, not a lecture.
SIZE - Visual aids must be large enough for your whole audience
to see them at the same time. Handouts do not work as the audience’s focus
shifts from you to what you have given them. They also create buzz and
distraction as they are handed around.
ATTRACTIVENESS - Visual aids must be visually
interesting and recognizable in order to accomplish their effect. Poorly
executed visual aids serve only to diminish your credibility as a speaker. All
visual aids need to be “set up.” Do not expect that we will know what we’re
looking at or what the context is. If their purpose could be interpreted in
several ways, tell us why you are showing it to us. Video clips, photos, charts
and graphs all need to be introduced and explained. Context is important.
APPROPRIATENESS - Remember your audience and your
purpose. Even very attractive and professional visual aids that do not relate
well to your topic are unsuccessful for your purpose. Remember also, the class’
makeup and likely level of sensitivity. Cultural, gender, and ethnic
sensitivity are important traits for successful speakers to develop and
RELIABILITY - Almost all visual aids require
some degree of practice and compatibility. If you are using classroom
electronic equipment for your visual aid, make sure that your media is
compatible and that you know how to work the equipment AHEAD OF YOUR SPEECH DAY. Make sure that your media will run on our
Videos, DVDs, and Power Point
slides, all need to be cued and set up before you
speak. Your Visual Aid must be ready when you need it, or its effect and your
credibility as a speaker will suffer.
TYPES - Visual aids can be: 1. Charts, 2. Graphs,
3. Representations, 4. Objects, 5. Models, and 6. People.