Oral Communication

Information for Teachers

Rationale and Background

This resource was designed to be used by teachers preparing and running sessions to help students to develop oral communication skills and by students in a self-directed way. The special feature is the student video. Students often feed back to us that they would like to see video footage of other people presenting to illustrate the points being made in workshops. They also reported finding the opportunity to watch other participants’ presentations and get feedback on their own most useful part of the workshops. We felt that incorporating peer performance modelling (Adams, 2004) would be an effective way to build confidence and set expectations (particularly with second language speakers). Much of our rationale is based on research, details of which is given in the Oral Communication Literature Review.

The video clips are all authentic footage of consenting Brunel students doing a mixture of practice and assessed presentations. The presenters range from subject areas such as Business and Management, Engineering, Physiotherapy, Sport Sciences, Design, Law, Psychology and Sociology and from levels of study from first year undergraduate to PhD students, so we hope to have catered for a range of disciplines and levels of ability.

Using the Resource

Below are links to pdf and Word versions of the downloadable resources that you might like to edit and use as handouts. All we ask is that you respect the Creative Commons Attribution License.

Downloadable Resources
Resource Title

Click title to link to related web page

Contributing to Seminars
Facilitating Discussions
Guide to Speaking
Learning how to Facilitate Discussions
Preparing for Seminars
What is the Point of Seminars
Assessing Oral Presentations
Getting Started with PowerPoint
How Did My Presentation Go?
Presentation Planner
Role play
What Makes an Effective Powerpoint Presentation?

In the case of the Preparing and Giving Presentations section, we have identified and reflected the main stages in the process in the design of this website, although there are overlaps. You may choose to use them in a different order. For each stage there are 3 – 5 video clips of different student presentations to illustrate the points on the main webpage. For each video clip there is a transcript and a several discussion points to encourage ‘users’ to evaluate the clip they have seen (which we believe to have good qualities) and to consider their own practice in the light of this and guidance on the main page, as well as any teacher and student input.

You may wish to use the video clips in a taught session, followed by using the discussion points, to explore key ideas. We would be very interested to know what you and your students think of this resource. Contact - kate_midlands@hotmail.com


Adams, K. (2004) ‘Modelling success: enhancing international postgraduate research students' self-efficacy for research seminar presentations’, Higher Education Research & Development, Vol. 23, No. 2 pp 115130




Brunel University (West London)