The master Defense
All master students at NMBU will have to defend their master thesis through an oral presentation. While they are expected to perform well, student generally receive little training in how to give a strong oral presentation. Luckily, students can have the opportunity to improve their oral defense by taking a three-hour, intensive workshop that will give them the tools and confidence needed to successfully defend their thesis.
About the workshop
The workshop is held by Writing Advisors at the Writing Center. Based on the shared experiences of previous Master students, and developed by a Writing Advisor with previous experience in teaching and public speaking, the Writing Centre offers a workshop that will give students confidence, help clarify their ideas, address weaknesses in their thesis and help them prepare their oral defense in advance.
Students must prepare a 5 minute presentation of their thesis prior to the workshop. The workshop is designed to give students a starting-point for their defence presentation, and an opportunity to critique their own presentations through the workshop, in order to make improvements.
The workshop is the direct result of student expressing concerns over their thesis presentations. The Writing Centre has provided the workshop for over three years and it is extremely popular among final semester Master students. Workshops are held near the end of each academic semester. Check the NMBU Writing Centre homepage Calendar to see when the next workshops will be held.
NOTE: Workshops are held in English, but students can present their research in the language they intend to defend in.
Student: "The paper was a C, but the examiners said that the defense presentation bumped me up to a B. So it's all because of your help"
"This sort of oral presentation workshop should be mandatory for all students," says Clay, the Writing Advisor who developed the workshop, as all students are expected to orally defend their thesis, but few receive oral presentation skills training during their studies. These skills are useful and important for worklife after University.
Student: "I think you have prepared an excellent workshop - nothing more is needed!"