Public speaking can be terrifying–an estimated 95% of people experience some anxiety when speaking in front of groups. Unfortunately for everyone except that lone 5%, college is full of public speaking requirements: speaking up as a member of a club, for example, or having to give the first of many class presentations. However, with these tips you can hopefully reduce your public-speaking stress and give killer presentations.
Be Prepared – Part of the terror of public speaking comes from a fear of screwing up publicly. You can reduce this chance (and as a result, the fear) by preparing beforehand: make a bullet-pointed outline for your speech, for instance. If you’re doing a powerpoint presentation in class, be sure not to have everything on the powerpoint–instead, put bullet-pointed cues on the slides and expand upon them while speaking (it’s okay to have personal notecards with the expanded information on them). This way you’ll look like you know what you’re talking about by giving the audience information that only comes from you, rather than your visual aids. In addition to looking competent, an outline or notecards will give you something to go back to should you get completely flustered.