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Collins Academic Skills Series: Presenting + MP3 CD

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Published 2013.

Collins Academic Skills Series: Presenting gives you the skills you need to plan, prepare and deliver successful presentations at college or university. Learn how to * feel confident and relaxed when presenting in seminars or tutorials * prepare concise and effective notes * keep your audience interested * anticipate problems Collins Academic Skills Series: Presenting will help you to make the most of your time at university. * Clear information and practice exercises, with chapters on seminars, tutorials and poster presentations * Audio CD with model language and effective presentation techniques * Information on academic expectations - understand the requirements of studying at university * Helpful tips and summaries * Answer key and glossary Presenting is part of a new six-book series to help international students achieve academic success at college or university. It is designed to support students who are studying, or preparing to study, at an English-speaking institution. Suitable for students whose level of English is Upper Intermediate / CEF level B2 / IELTS 5.5 and higher. Other titles in the Collins Academic Skills Series: series Group Work * Lectures * Numbers * Research * Writing.

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Provides an excellent bridge from General English to EAP

Reviewed by Sharon Chalmers, Director of Studies, Live Languag

Part of the Collins Academic Skills Series, this text offers a thorough look into the steps to delivering a successful presentation in a university context. It’s organised in a systematic manner and provides an extensive reference section in the appendices, including a ‘Useful phrases’ and ‘Talking about numbers and figures.’ 

Each unit follows a similar pattern, with an engaging balance of input and practice, making it an excellent self-study resource. Particularly useful, is the self-evaluation quiz at the beginning of each unit, allowing students to assess their needs. Unlike similar titles, the practice exercises are familiar to EFL students, ie gap fills, matching, etc. This makes working through the book more interactive than others. Units are supported with a Glossary, Tip Strips and a Remember section at the end.

The supporting CD provides listening practice, particularly beneficial for the chapter on how to use your voice effectively. The use of intonation and stress is dealt with in some depth, unusual for texts of this type. Although great for listening, a CD-ROM with examples of visual aids and Power Points might also have been an excellent addition. 

Although the language can be over-simplified at times, by maintaining an EFL text feel to the book, it’s likely to be extremely useful for students wishing to develop presentation skills. 

One of the most impressive aspects of this text, and the series in general, is the ease of use. Each unit can effectively stand alone, allowing students to focus on weak areas. The aims of each unit are clearly stated and having Tip Strips and the Glossary throughout ensure that students can work through the exercises effectively. These features make the text an extremely accessible and practical guide for students with varying degrees of experience in delivering presentations. 

The systematic approach also lends itself to promotion of the looking at a presentation beyond the delivery itself. The text considers all aspects of the process of developing a presentation: before, during and after. 

The appendices provide a useful reference and key language bank, which complement the units well and with frequent self-evaluation exercises throughout, students are encouraged to assess progress. 

It’s an engaging text, not through the use of visual aids directly, but rather from having each unit divided into smaller, more motivating sub-sections. Units are clearly signposted, allowing students to pick and choose relevant sections. It manages to stimulate interest in the subject matter and make it user-friendly, which can often not be the case in other texts dealing with EAP

Especially impressive are the diagrams on classroom layout.

Reviewed by Pete Sharma

This self-study book is one of a new series of six academic books, and is suited to students on pre-sessional and foundation courses at university. There are twelve chapters. Especially impressive are the diagrams on classroom layout, and the sections on body language and creating effective visual aids. This book covers not only presenting, but also running seminars and designing poster presentations. The information on referencing, while useful, is arguably more appropriate for essay-writing. I would have liked more on dealing with questions. This practical, 191 page book will certainly be of benefit to students preparing to give academic presentations.

Price: £ 14.99

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