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Engage, Inform, Inspire: Bringing Your Presentation Skills to the Next Level (427)


26 November and 5 December 2024

Lang EN Workshop language is English

Dr Samuel Lagier


Solid communication skills are required to succeed in a variety of career paths. Researchers, in particular, present their work in many different settings (lab meetings, conferences, job interviews…) and mastering - or not - presentation skills can make - or break - a career in or outside of academia. Even for seasoned speakers, the preparation and delivery of an impactful talk is riddled with challenges, such as finding the optimal balance between facts and storytelling, identifying the right level of details to share with an audience, managing stress when standing in front of people.

This intensive two-day workshop will help the participants master the different aspects of a presentation to effectively engage, inform and inspire their audience.

The workshop will start with every doctoral candidates giving a 5-minute presentation of their research. With a mix of theory and practical exercises, the first day will continue following a simple roadmap to prepare a successful talk, which includes knowing your audience, streamlining the talk and designing effective slides. Participants will use their 5-min presentation to apply the skills learned throughout the course in order to refine it for the second part of the workshop. Doctoral candidates will receive feedback from their peers and the trainer throughout the workshop.

The final day of the course will be dedicated to the delivery of a presentation. With a lot of dedicated exercises participants will practice using their voice, mastering their body language and managing their stress to appear competent and confident. At the end of the day, the doctoral candidates will present their revised talks in front of the group. The presentations will be filmed and analysed by the group. Each participant will receive feedback from the trainer on their performance to allow them to minimise the impact of their flaws and to capitalise on their strengths.

Learning outcomes

The doctoral candidates will have developed their public speaking and scientific storytelling skills by preparing one excellent model talk on their research. In the process, they will also have garnered skills for creating and delivering impressive future presentations. At the end of the workshop, participants will be able to:

  • prepare any talk with a simple roadmap
  • understand the challenges of scientific talks
  • deliver an engaging talk
  • enjoy sharing their work with the confidence gained during the workshop
  • analyse talks to learn from others


Pedagogical methods

The workshop will be very interactive. Students should wear comfortable clothes that they can move in and they should bring their laptops, or a thumb-drive and a notebook and pen. Participants' talks will be filmed and the recordings will be shared with the students at the end of the workshop for future study.


Participants should be comfortable and able to express themselves in English (level B2/C1), and they should also be moderately experienced in giving presentations (lab meetings, departmental meetings, etc.). 

Intended Audience

This workshop is beneficial to all doctoral candidates who have a story to tell.





University of Geneva


Date: Thursday 26th November and Thursday 5th December 2024

Schedule: 9 am to 5.30 pm

Location: University of Geneva



Dr Samuel Lagier is a multi-talented scientist and improviser. He founded and runs whose goal is to help researchers talk about their expertise. He curated, coached for and hosted the TEDxLausanne conference for 6 years. He is an active member of the Catalyst theatre company which creates new media to communicate science ( He performs and teaches improv to individuals and applied improv to corporate clients with the Renegade Saints (

In his scientific career, Dr Lagier studied sensory perception in the normal and in the schizophrenic brain, in France, the United States and in Switzerland.




Participants are eligible for reimbursement of incurred travel expenses by train between the city of their university and the location of the workshop (half-fare card, 2nd class).



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