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Part 2 will be how to finish your thesis in a timely manner (and write a good quality thesis).Part 3 will be life after a Ph D, making the transition into the workforce, and how to prepare ahead of time (i.e.When you watch the talk, ask yourself what makes it good or bad? If you are, the thesis defense talk is just a formality.
My talk was ~45-50 minutes long which also leaves time for questions.
Either way, do not procrastinate on your slides and/or talk until days before.
At least go to one so that you have a good idea of how to TIE the whole story together and give your audience the big picture.
Keep in mind that you are giving a talk to a general audience.
Your talk/presentation is only as good as you want it to be.
And you cannot fully prepare for all the endless possibility of questions.What’s the best way to prepare for unforeseen questions?Have others that are familiar with your work drill you with questions.If you are unsure of the quality of your talk (or being “ready”), tape record yourself or watch a video of yourself to see just how good it is.You might be surprised when you play it back to yourself. I noticed that I tend to talk faster (by about 5 minutes) when giving the actual public talk vs. The length of the talk can depend on many departmental factors.This means that use of jargon and highly technical terms will only put your audience to sleep. Simplify it the best that you can and put it in the larger context of your research field.Use cartoons or model slides (if necessary) to give your audience the general, overall picture.Make sure you use the full two weeks to perfect your slides, polish your talk (and be very concise about your words), and review material you are unsure about.The best way to mentally prepare for your thesis defense talk is to listen to other thesis defense talks.How can you prepare, keep the stress levels low, and make sure you have the highest chance of success?I’ll just say that everyone’s Ph D Defense is unique and is unpredictable.