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When presenting an oral defense, answer the research questions

What’s the main objective when presenting an oral defense?

Objective (questions)

  • Are you posing researchable questions that relate to the theory (i.e., literature review)?
  • Do your researchable questions included in the presentation match (word for word) to those research questions included in the thesis paper?
  • Are you defining in the theory (with citations) any keywords that need defining?
  • Are you answering directly and specifically the research questions in the Results and Discussion section with clear examples?
  • Are you answering your research questions in a coherent (organized) and cohesive (connecting ideas, etc.) way?
  • Are you triangulating your evidence, data sources, etc. before discussing them?
  • Are you including mainly the results in the slides and discussing them later through your speech and not so much putting text in slides that relate to the discussion unless absolutely necessary?
  • Are you linking your discussion with both original thought and comparing and contrasting your interpretation to the theory?




What’s the main objective when presenting an oral defense? Hello and welcome to in the classroom and educational podcasts. Making teaching and learning more transparent. 


My name is Benjamin Stewart at Benjamin L Stewart, Oregon. Today is May 31st, 2021. Today I want to talk about the main purpose of presenting an oral defense. Today we are. 


Erm, basically concluding a 16 week course doing research, providing or designing and creating a thesis paper around a specific problem that relates to applied linguistics, and we’ve completed the paper and now we are trying to include the key points. 


From that thesis paper into a 20 minute presentation allowing 10 minutes for question and answer, we’re at a point now where we have basically one more week before we begin with oral presentation, so I think it’s a good time at. 


At this point, to stress and justice, focus again on what our main objective is. When we present an oral defense. 


The objective is simply to present a set of questions, one question or two, or three questions that relate to the problem, to the key point of our thesis paper and in the results and discussion section. To answer those questions. That’s that’s the key point. 


So make sure that at this point in your preparation, when you’re putting together ideas in your slides and your PowerPoint presentation. 


Then that number one you have included your research questions just before the method section #2 that those research questions are in fact being answered in your results and discussion section. 


Sometimes it happens where at the end of this whole process we still are going back to our research questions. 


To slightly modify to tweak maybe. 


Tighten our research questions to make sure that we are directly answering those questions. That’s very important. Sometimes this might mean merging questions. 


Maybe you’re combining one or two questions into one question, maybe in some cases you’re completely removing a question because at the end of the day. 


The question was not answered. You’re going to focus instead on other questions. 


So those are all possible changes that you might be making now. At this point we’ve already completed our thesis paper, so we’re past the point of changing our research questions. But when we look at our PowerPoint presentation, make sure that you have included those. Present those questions. 


In your presentation, in one as one slide, make sure those questions are identical to the questions that you included in your thesis paper. 


Make sure that the questions that you included in your PowerPoint that you’re addressing those questions in your theory in your literature review those 8 minutes or so that you’re going to have to discuss the theory. Make sure that you’re presenting ideas in such a way that addressed the research questions. Where do others? 


The other researchers how did are they answering those same research questions that you’re posing in your present? 


And in the second again, making sure that in the results and discussion section that you include. 


A clear heading that articulates the key point of each slide as you’re progressing from idea to idea, each slide should be about 1 main idea. A very specific point that relates to answering your research questions and So what I do and a lot of times I ask students to do this is simply. 


Go back to one of the questions that you have in the slide and then I ask. 


Then to go to the slide or slides in the theory that addresses that that question and then jump down to the results and discussion section to find the slide or slides that directly answer those questions. You can do this yourself as you prepare your ideas. 


Make sure you go question to question and you jump around your presentation to make sure that each of those questions are being answered again in terms of the theory and in terms of your own study at the end in the results and discussion set. 




Remember that when we’re presenting our ideas, we want to triangulate the different data sources 1st. And typically we’re going to be showing most of the evidence in the slides. OK, the direct quotes results from questionnaires results from any kind of stimulatory call, classroom observations very important. 


A lot of the comments that I’ve been providing or the feedback that I’ve been providing to students has to relate to trying to be more specific in those classroom observations. What did you see? What did the teacher say in class? Where did the students say in class? 


What did the teacher do in class? What did the students do in class specifically? 


Finally, make sure that the key terms the keywords that you’ve identified for your study, both in terms of the theory and also in your own presentation that you are clearly defining what those terms are. If you have a term such as communicative strategies. 


Are you defining what a communicative strategy is, and are you providing specific examples from the theory? 


In in your presentation. 


Are you showing direct evidence in your results and discussion section about what a communicative strategy is or what? What are some examples that communicative strategies came up in your classroom observations, not only from the interviews, but specifically what did you see in class? 


1st, that would be an example of a communicative strategy. Take each of the key terms that are that are appropriate for your study and look at each one of those in those terms. How are you defining it? 


And are you providing examples of that key term in your result in discussion section? I hope this helps guys. This is just to focus on making sure that you’re you’re posing the questions that they’re very clear. 


That they’re stated just before the method section and that you’re answering them very clearly, both in terms of the theory as well as your own study. This has been in the classroom and Education Podcast making teaching and learning more transparent. Thanks for listening.