Tips for Distance Educational Presentations

  • On slides, use at least 36-pt. font size for titles and 28 font size for other lines. Note: To make slides legible by a distant viewer, use the ‘Arial’ bolded (not the ‘ARIAL BOLD’ font) or Helvetica font.
  • Avoid RED text, graphics and backgrounds. RED does not transmit well over the system.
  • Use high contrast between text and solid-color background. Yellow or white on dark blue or black makes text much more legible to distant sites. For self-made graphs use “fill-in” shading, not dots or patterns.
  • Scans of tables and graphs from journals are often very difficult to read. Point with the cursor arrow to the area you are referencing.  A laser pointer’s light on the local screen will not transmit to the remote sites because we use a direct video feed from the presenter’s PC/laptop to the videoconferencing equipment and then to the remote sites. Test out your slides ahead of time using two videoconference units on campus. Our telemedicine staff are happy to assist you.
  • If using video clips in your presentation, bring them on your laptop rather than bringing them on a flash or thumb drive to ensure they will run properly.
  • Request that remote sites MUTE their microphones during your main presentation. Once connectivity is established, remember the microphone and camera are ‘on’ at each site. Therefore, a cough, a chair moving, etc. at one site moves all sites’ view to that remote screen. (They can “unmute” their microphone when they want to ask a question or make a comment.)
  • Let the distant sites know you can see and hear them, and that you will be responsive to their questions and comments. Typically remote sites will act passive, especially in the beginning. If possible, chat a bit with them before the presentation begins to put them at ease.
  • Specifically ask the remote sites if they have any questions.  For example ask, "Does anyone at Massena have any questions?”  (10-second pause)…“or at Copley Hospital?”
  • If someone asks a question from the local audience, be sure to repeat the question for the distant sites. Microphones in a large room are often not in locations that clearly pick up the voice of someone in the audience.

  • For your clothing, avoid the color red, stripes, checks, and other patterned designs. To distant observers they can appear to be “pulsing”. Choose solid colors where possible (avoiding white or red) for shirts, scarves, ties, etc.

EMS Home Distance Learning. Some of this information is taken from: