Presenting Your Research Confidently

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Have you ever wondered how you can present your research results in a more confident manner? In this course you will learn how to improve both your preparation and your presentation skills. You will discover how to design your visuals in the clearest and most appropriate way, structure your presentation correctly, get and keep the audience’s attention, make good use of your voice and body language, and handle questions from the audience.

Practice by presenting your own research results

A useful feature of this course is that you will be able to practice presenting your own research results, and will get feedback to improve your presentation. This will enable you to make adjustments that will render your talk more effective. Also, you will be less nervous when giving your next presentation, as you will already have had an opportunity to overcome any weaknesses. By presenting your research results confidently, you will be able to attract and retain your audience’s interest, thereby enabling you to make your point more effectively.

Please note: participants in this course are required to hand in assignments every week, deadlines will be on Thursdays and Saturdays.

We strongly encourage you to have a presentation ready before the start of the course. This could be a presentation you've given before or one that is part of your current research project. Having one ready means you do not have to work on the content so much, because you have already decided on that. You can then fully focus on improving your presenting skills.
Of course you can also participate in the course if you do not have a talk ready. In that case, we advise you to schedule in more preparation time.

Presenting Your Research Confidently is one of the online courses of the MSc Epidemiology Postgraduate Online; the online MSc program in Epidemiology offered by Utrecht University, University Medical Center Utrecht, MSc Epidemiology and Elevate Health

Learning objectives

By the end of this course on presenting your research, you will be able to:

  • Structure a presentation correctly, and know which information elements to include
  • Give a successful presentation in an academic setting

In particular, you will be able to:

  • Design clear, interesting visuals
  • Ensure a good rapport with the audience
  • Use your voice in such a way that the audience keeps listening
  • Handle the audience’s questions politely and appropriately
  • Use an enlarged academic vocabulary
  • Understand and overcome your own strengths and weaknesses in presenting in English

Course topics

  • Getting started

Information elements to include in an academic presentation; structuring your presentation; creating an effective opening and ending; performing a  presenting-related task

  • Creating a rapport with the audience

Language to use in a presentation; designing interesting visuals; performing a  presenting-related task. Peer reviews will be used.

  • Delivery

How to use your voice; body language; effective use of gestures; performing a  presenting-related task. Peer reviews will be used.

  • Final issues

Finalizing your presentation (including via peer and teacher feedback); revisiting your learning objectives; dealing with questions from the audience politely and appropriately; performing a  presenting-related task; evaluating the course.

Learning methods

The whole course will take place online. The following learning methods will be used:

  • Individual study (reading and tasks)
  • Pair and group work
  • Peer review and feedback
  • Expert review and feedback

Course Deadlines

Please note that you are required to hand in assignments during some of the learning units in this course:

Week 0
Sunday before start date - introduce yourself

Week 1
Thursday – submit presenting task
Friday – peer feedback on presenting task
Saturday – submit presenting task for teacher feedback
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 1

Week 2
Thursday – submit presenting task
Friday – peer feedback on presenting task
Saturday – submit presenting task for teacher feedback
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 2

Week 3
Thursday – submit presenting task
Friday – peer feedback on presenting task
Saturday – submit presenting task for teacher feedback
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 3

Week 4
Thursday – submit final presentation for peer feedback
Saturday – peer feedback on final presentation
Sunday – complete Learning Unit 4
Monday after course closure – submit your final presentation for grading

Completing all required assignments and meeting the deadlines are requirements to take the final exam.


To successfully complete this Presenting Your Research Confidently course, you need to participate actively in the discussion forums and complete the learning unit assignments, including:

  • Your presentation (75% of the final mark, of which half will be awarded for your use of language  and half for the content)
  • 3 presentation assignments (25% of the final mark)

The deadline for submitting your final presentation will be published as soon as possible.


As Presenting Your Research Confidently is a university course, it is covered by academic accreditation. Upon successful completion of this course, you will receive a recognized certificate from Utrecht University and the UMC Utrecht.

Study Materials

In this course we will refer to the book Dynamic Presentations by Mark Powell for background information. Please make sure you have access to this book before starting the course. You can purchase the book here or here or you can find it yourself on the internet (ISBN-10: 0521150043).

Entry requirements

To enroll in this course, you need:

  • A Bachelor’s degree
  • Sufficient proficiency in English reading and writing

Please note
As this is an online course, you do need access to an internet connection in order to be able to follow lectures, complete assignments and communicate with fellow participants.

The entire course is also available offline. For more information about this option, please visit the MSc Epidemiology website.

Course staff

Quick overview

  • 13 Jan 2020 – 2 Feb 2020
  • 4 weeks
  • 4 hrs/wk
  • Certificate
  • 0.5 EC
  • Online
  • English
  • Individual study (reading, tasks), pair and group work
  • Desktop, Laptop, Smartphone, Tablet
  • 99

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