Presentations (i.e., public speaking) are an important skill for residents who are asked throughout their training to present to faculty, peers, medical students, and perhaps even to members of the community. While subject knowledge is an essential part of a good presentation, success hinges on two factors:

  1. The ability to clearly communicate your message
  2. Engaging the audience by creating interest and showing subject relevance

The importance of these two factors are often underestimated or perhaps overlooked by many presenters because the focus is typically only on content and how much you can fit into your time period.

Dynamic public speakers are not necessarily born with the skills required to engage an audience, sustain their attention, and deliver meaningful information. These skills can be learned and, with practice, they can be successfully implemented.




  1. Designing Smart Lectures. Center for Teaching and Learning; University of Minnesota [Website URL]

Articles / Books:

  1. Clark N. Criteria for Professional Presentations; Florida State University College of Medicine
  2. Davidhizar R, Dowd SB. The Art of Giving an Effective Presentation. Health Care Superv. 1997 Mar;15(3):25-31.
  3. Davis, BG. (1983 Tools for Teaching; Jossey-Bass Publishers: San Francisco. 1993.
  4. Gelula, MH (1997) Effective Lecture Presentation Skills. Surg. Neurol. 47, 201-204.
  5. Sullivan R, McIntosh N (1996) Delivering Effective Lectures. JHPIEGO Strategy Paper: Reproductive Health Online (ReproLine): a family planning and reproductive health training website.
  6. Whitman, N.A.. There Is No Gene For Good Teaching: A Handbook on Lecturing for Medical Teachers. Salt Lake City, UT: The University of Utah School of Medicine.1982.