Tips / Guidelines for Students for Final Year Projects (FYP) Presentations

My 5 final year students have a BSCS project pre-defense in coming days. One of them asked for some tips for good online presentation. Here are some quick points, if you are also presenting your academic project, please consider:
1. Claim only what you have done yourself, never make a wrong statement or that you may not justify. Otherwise, you would make your small contribution a waste and the examiner would assume all you work is copied. Claiming less work is far better than claiming more that you have not done yourself.
2. Do not spend too much time on basics e.g. history, problem statement, technologies, etc. if your project is not noval e.g. MIS system or a website. It kills the examiner's interest. Your other job is to keep the examiner interested in your presentation. So present important, challenging, valuable stuff first, that you feel would be new or interesting for the examiner. Keeping the examiner interested is your core responsibility and you do it sharing the right content in the right style. Otherwise, the examiner would run after asking you questions and in the worst case, may not even listen to your whole presentation (this is not always bad, but leaving a good impression in the very start pay back better for such worst cases too)
3. Every word you speak must be clear and decently loud enough, even if you are making a wrong statement. Never speak hoch poch, too low with a non confident voice and never miss words, never leave your statement incomplete thinking the examiner has understood what you meant. Say, what you mean. Be precise.
4. For some cases, your system/software may be new for the examiner. Or his area or domain may be different from your project. Specially if you are working on latest technologies or problems e.g. Blockchain, Digital Currencies, AI, etc. For such cases, make sure, in the very start you must explain basic ideas/terms of the domain so that the examiner becomes interested in your talk and evaluation. Otherwise, he would give very low or very high marks, depending on his inspiration and frustration about the technology you are working on or the way you presented.
5. Do not discuss problems in the beginning. Do not discuss what you could not complete. Do not discuss the issues you are still facing. Do not discuss problems you are still unable to solve. Present what you have done, not what you wish you had done or plan to do. Yea, at end, only at end, you can show some direction for future work. People make mistakes, in the very start, they express, we could not do this, we tried that ... we will ... these statements clearly shows you are not problem solver and have not done much.
6. Have a strong story to justify the rationale of your idea/project and share at the very start of your presentation.
7. As the presentation would be online, make sure your mic/headphone is working. Your internet speed is good (borrow 4G device if your connection is risky). Must pre-test speed. Present in a noise free environment so that you could concentrate better during presentation. Use headphones instead of a loudspeaker to stop echo back effect, etc.
8. Large development work is not required, nor its expected in academic projects but quality of your work matters a lot. So, instead of developing 50 or more use cases, develop 15 to 20 or less (depending on your project complexity) but the UI, UX, code quality, ER diagram, document quality, document formatting, English quality, focus to details in all artifacts you produced should express your great craftsmanship. Things like: no error messages, inappropriate flows, no confirmation alerts, poor navigation, separator login screen for each user type, no testing on real data, etc. express you are a careless person and have not bothered to even think like a user, then it does not matter how many use cases you have developed, your evaluation would be poor.
9. A good invigilator and examiner must act as a facilitator first and then someone else. But unfortunately 80%+ examiners and invigilators act like policemen. So, try to understand the psychology of the examiner and proceed accordingly. Some gives good enough time and others get an idea and ask you to move next .. It's difficult to judge but you get an idea when you know what to look for. Remember, take evaluation as another chance to learn and get real feedback about your project from experienced people. You would learn more from a strict examiner. From my experience, let me share, a strict examiner is a blessing, he/she teaches you the stuff that a normal teacher doesn't teach in a year. He shows you the depth of the sea... that you can explore later.
10. Do not use traditional templates of slides, use modern design. Use large font size, modern font-family etc. for slides. Never paste long paras in slides. Show images wherever it makes sense. Never read long passages from slides. I think these are basic points ... and you know what I mean.
11. Take the presentation as a moment of enjoyment and fulfilment as you get an opportunity to explain what you were up to for the last one year. What else can be so cool than talking about your brain child? Mostly, you are the only person in the room who knows most about your topic. So, always do your best but never lose hope, no matter what happens during the presentation. Life is once, it shall be enjoyed and lived well and happily. You would laugh later on your level of seriousness and useless worries about presentations. Always be happy and have a good time.