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Interloper wishes to ask a question

(5 Posts)
2ndSopranosRule Tue 03-May-16 22:20:40

I'm not an academic so please don't shoo me away...!

I work in HE in a professional support role. Am highly qualified, experienced and part of my department's leadership team.

I've had a horrendous 12 months work-wise and my confidence has taken a battering. I do teaching sessions as part of my role, and deliver the odd conference paper. I used to be very confident at that sort of thing but lately I get into an absolute state. I'm presenting tomorrow and have been in a mess all day.

My paper is fine. I know what I'm talking about. I have to travel and know all my arrangements.

I once a research student once upon a time and this was a nothing event.

Tips please?

HarrietVane99 Tue 03-May-16 22:45:43

Being confident in your subject is the main thing.

Have you allowed plenty of time to get there, allowing for delays? It can be a good thing to arrive early enough to have a cup of tea or coffee and relax a bit.

When it's your turn to speak, don't be rushed. Take time to get comfortable, arrange your notes, if you have any. Say something like 'good morning everyone' or thank the person who's introduced you, just to get used to the sound of your own voice, and make sure you're pitching it appropriately.

Don't speak too fast. If you feel nerves are making you gabble, pause, take a drink of water, make a conscious effort to slow down. A pause may seem like a long time to you, but it won't to your audience.

Good luck.

MedSchoolRat Wed 04-May-16 09:32:57

Harriet is right, concentrate on your material. They have turned up because they want to hear what you have to say. They want it to be interesting & you want to make it interesting. Speaking slowly is really helpful. It won't sound slow to your audience at all.

everyone will be enormously sympathetic if you do show any signs of nerves.

You have my sympathies, too. I hate public speaking. Can tolerate it if only a few times a yr. Main reason I could never be a lecturer.

2ndSopranosRule Thu 05-May-16 06:42:35

It was fine (phew). The conference had a hashtag and it's been nice seeing that delegates have been tweeting about my paper, most gratifying.

Dellarobia Sat 07-May-16 18:36:52

Glad it went well! Hopefully this will help you to start regaining your confidence.

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