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RMIT University Library - Learning Lab



Engaging your audience

You should have developed a clear structure (introduction, body and conclusion). The following hints will help your structure come alive. To keep the audience interested the talk must be lively and varied. A lively and varied talk uses a range of strategies.

Ways to interest the audience from the beginning

Here are some useful openers:

1. Ask a provocative question.

Did you realise that because you are at university, you are likely to live five years longer than the national average?

2. Tell an anecdote.

My interest in this topic started when...

3. Present statistics.

Did you know that three out of five people in the room will die of heart disease?

4. Use a personalised statement.

Good morning, my name is Christine...

5. Ask a rhetorical question.

Isn't it a bit unnerving that doctors call what they do "practice"? (George Carlin)