Presentation Information

Key Details

1. The presentation at end of block must be attended in order to successfully complete the course (for those doing rotations in Charlotte or Asheville, your service will let you know how they want to handle the presentations). We will not be flexible in this requirement and allow presentations in other blocks. Pay attention to this requirement in scheduling this rotation as it corresponds to residency interviews! Also, please note that students are excused from clinical responsibilities on the day of the presentations.

2. Presentations must be on a topic from the clinical component completed that month. You will not be able to use a presentation on another topic from some other rotation. However, presentations that were made for other purposes in that elective month, for instance required presentation that some electives have, are perfectly fine to use, at least in part, for this requirement. 

3. Presentations must emphasize how basic sciences and clinical research has led to improved outcomes for a clinical problem in your individual field of study.  Again, the definition of basic science and clinical research and clinical problem are deliberately broad. A  presentation on the clinical question or medical problem alone is not acceptable. The presentation should focus on how scientific research has helped your field solve, or begin to solve, an important clinical question.


  • ~ 5 minute oral presentation - one slide on the clinical question, one on the research and one on the synthesis.
  • Clearly demonstrates the correlation between the scientific research and clinical care.
  • Emphasizes the scientific effort behind the clinical problem being described.  This should be a detailed discussion of whatever aspect you choose to demonstrate.
  • Assure that this highlights the integration of the two topics and is not just a clinical presentation.
  • Presented in logical fashion with an appropriate introduction to the clinical problem and emphasis on highlighting the science.
  • First slide should give your objectives for the talk.  What is the one thing we need to know?

- gives audience idea of what you are going to cover and what you deem to be the keys to your talk

- helps you organize your thoughts and presentation logically as you put the talk together.


Presentation Tips

  • Remember you are the expert and you are teaching others about something that they are unfamiliar with.
  • If you include video in your presentation, send a separate file of the video along with your presentation so that we can assure it will be available for your presentation.
  • Allow 1-1.5 slides per minute of talk (means 2-3 slides for an 3 minute talk)
  • Stay on time for the presentation.
  • Go through the slides once or twice prior to the presentation to familiarize yourself and to time yourself.
  • Talk to the audience, not the screen.
  • Involve the audience in your presentation.
  • Use slides to illustrate points, not to read verbatim (the audience can do that)
  • Use diagrams to represent complex points or mechanisms that can
  •  then be talked over and pointed out by you as the speaker.
  • Present in organized and logical fashion, clearly stating the problem being discussed and approaching the problem systematically.
  • Consider using a clinical case scenario to introduce the problem.  This may make the topic more relevant for both you as the presenter and for your audience and this may allow you to involve the audience.
  • Things to Avoid:

- Don’t use red in the text of your slides.  Looks great on the computer, but projects very poorly.  Yellow or white text are best.

- Don’t use black/grey text on a dark background.  Hard to read.  Ok to use on white background slides.

- Avoid overly busy slides.

Sample Topics

For examples of past presentations, please click here.

Other sample topics include:

  • How did we discover the scientific underpinning of myasthenia gravis
  • Development of the reatment of metastatic thyroid cancer with radioactive iodine
  • How was bevacizumab discovered to be useful in colorectal cancer
  • How ere the genetic findings in inherited breast cancer discovered
  • Research studies of gram negative sepsis
  • Epidemiology of hospital acquired MRSA infections
  • Ethics of prenatal screening for birth defects