Preparing for your Thesis defense tips and strategies


All of us who yearn to have graduating as a milestone of our lives need one step done – thesis defense.  This experience can be a nerve-wracking one and this of course will teach us many lessons that can get us far from even what we imagine.  Here are some of the few but most effective tips in order for you to give your panel a very good and well-thought presentation.

Have enough rest and proper diet during the week of your presentation

Being sleepy and improperly fed are the last two things you want to happen to you during the presentation.  Practice having good food and rest in the week of your presentation; do not cram and have an all-nighter, do not take in too much energy drinks.  Relax, eat healthy, and let positivity come in your way.

Look clean and professional during the day

Dress to impress; looking good is not always about the outside but the inside as well.  Dressing good is not just about making the opposite gender attracted to you, it is also showcasing preparedness and organization on what you are about to do.

  • Know what to wear (depends on the school)
  • Have one thing that stands out (a colorful tie, a beautiful jacket, a nice scarf, etc.)
  • Carry your outfit naturally and be confident with it

Know your material inside and out

Going on with the actual defense, not being able to know what you have done can be the main cause of dead air, stuttering, and other forms of nervousness or anxiety.  Take time to really learn what you have studied inside and out; try to come up with possible questions that the panel may answer, try to always have the state of mind that you have a limited amount of time – but you should not rush.  Study it thorough and you should be fine.

Practice your presentation

Just one tip of advice: you are not there to present 50 slides in just 20 minutes but you are there to present at least 15-20 slides in 45 minutes to an hour.  Have less words in your slides because the panel would only be reading those slides and would be listening to you throughout your presentation; ensure that you know what you are saying in each slide and if the time comes that you forget a thing or two, be sure to have knowledge keeps that you can skim for information.

Read: Back to school tips for College Students

You do not always know the answer

There will always come a time when would be thrown a question that you do not know the answer to and professionals know that because even they have gaps in their knowledge.  Not everyone is perfect and you should accept that so what do you do when you come across this experience?  You can always say “I don’t know,” but it would be better if you say “I don’ know but I think that …. In order to … you would need to … for them to know that you can answer as an academic.  Ensure that what you’re talking about is somehow connected or related to their thrown question.

You are talking too fast

When we are nervous, there are tendencies wherein we may talk too fast and we might not be aware of it because of the fact that we are nervous.  Try to have a breathing pattern during your presentation to help you notice when you’re talking too fast.  When you do notice, take time to breathe in and out and then continue with what you are talking about.   If you’re under a question, take time to breathe and remember the question well while thinking for an answer.

Answer questions directly

When we say answer questions directly, that does not literally mean that direct.  Answer with the thought of having the questioner or panel satisfaction while you give it to them in a way that they would understand.  This one is hard to visualize but it would be easy to apply once you’re already in the moment.  Answer the question and do not say anything that is not asked so that you maintain a profile of being concise, prepared, and knowledgeable.

Completing our study is a new chapter in our lives because it opens new doors for us; it relays us a lot of opportunities that we can grab and things that we can have.  I hope that this guide was successful in helping you get through that.  These are the things I have done during my time as a student and I can swear that these things helped me out a lot in being successful in defending my study.  I wish you guys luck and may you have a very good and successful thesis presentation and defense.

Read Also: Most common grammatical errors we make

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