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Student Orals: How to Ace Them


How can you ace your student orals?

  1. Prepare hand-written notes
  2. Practice speaking in front of your friends
  3. Make your study breaks worthwhile
  4. Do not do all-nighters
  5. Stay calm during your oral defense


Orals exams are one of the biggest fears for students, so much that a lot go to public speaking training in the Philippines for help. You are not only judged by teachers for your knowledge. You are also judged for your personal presentation. If your student orals are coming up soon, these are tips to help you ace them:


Prepare hand-written notes

Before even practicing how to speak, you should prepare what you are going to speak about first. You don’t want your audience to feel that your words are nothing more than mere rubbish. Even teachers at public speaking seminars in the Philippines prepare their lines before going on stage because not doing so will lead to their listeners feeling they wasted time and money.

When it comes to preparing notes for your oral exam, these are tips you can follow:


Rewrite your lessons by hand

Your lessons were most probably typed, rather than hand-written. Additionally, if you ever got extra notes from your friends, it was also most likely through the internet.

While the computer and internet have made it convenient it for us to gather notes, physically, it has made it more difficult for our brains to remember anything.

This is why you need to rewrite notes before an exam because our brain only critically engages with the lessons we are studying when they are written by hand. First, doing your notes again with a pen makes you recall information better on the oral defense day itself. Second, you realize the stuff you’ve overlooked. 3rd, you can add things such as color and symbols that make your notes easier to remember


Always prioritize what you are weakest in

For most students, their biggest fear is having to answer an oral question which they least prepared for. Unfortunately, this has happened to many times for a lot of them and you can possibly experience the same thing as well.

When people study, their biggest enemy is usually anxiety. They can’t help but think of negative thoughts, even if they aren’t in the examination room yet. “Why am I even trying?” “I’m never going to learn everything.”

These thoughts happen because there are certain concepts in their exam material which they struggle to understand. Don’t let those thoughts stop you from memorizing the difficult parts. It is hard but worth it.


Practice speaking in front of your friends

Practice speaking in front of your friends

A course of public speaking training in the Philippines will always have a class where it is basically an oral speaking practice session for its students. This is because perfection and expertise only come from actual practice. You, like so many students, are so afraid of talking in front of people. Thus, the best way to get over your fear is by practicing with the people you trust most, which are your friends.

Your friends can help you practice by:

  • Videotaping you while you speak.
    • With a video of yourself, you can analyze later your body movements and how much you mumble.
    • You will find what aspects of your speaking and body language need to be improved.
  • Giving honest criticism after you talk.
  • Giving suggestions for improvement.


Make your study breaks worthwhile

How you rest is just as important as how you study. According to science, you retain information best when you have at least 5 minutes of break after 50 minutes of studying.

Once you rest, don’t settle for just using social media. Help your mind even during your study breaks by:

  • Doing cardio exercises, like jogging.
    • Blood flow and hormones make your brain’s hippocampus grow bigger.
    • Hippocampus is in charge of memory and learning.
  • Eating superfood snacks for brain fuel (nuts, Greek yogurt, oatmeal, fruits).


Do not do all-nighters

Do not do all-nighters

Ah, the dreaded cramming night session before oral exam day. No matter how many teachers tell you how detrimental staying up all night for a subject is to your mind, you and your classmates will probably still do it.

Nonetheless, your teachers are right. These are good reasons to avoid all-nighters:

  • Cramming will cause unnecessary anxiety.
    • When you have jitters, your brain finds it harder to retain information.
    • Additionally, your brain can only cram info for 20 minutes before completely shutting down. This leads to an inefficient waste of time.
  • A night of no sleep can ruin your memory for four days, including the day of your oral defense.


Stay calm during your oral defense

When you speak in front of your teacher, how you act matters as much as your knowledge. Be assured that your teacher will not grade you fondly if you stutter, panic or get a nervous breakdown in front of him or her.

Tips from public speaking seminars in the Philippines that will help you stay calm while you present include:

  • Taking deep breaths 5 minutes before you go to the teacher.
  • If you start to panic and stutter, ask your teacher for 30 seconds to think quietly.
  • Bring water in the exam room and drink it whenever you get tired. Tiredness makes you forget more.


Key Takeaway

Oral exams terrify students for good reasons. Teachers not only judge your intellectual knowledge but also your personal presentation. The tips stated in this list will assure that you ace your student’s orals with flying colors.

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