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Reviving the medical lecture: practical tips for delivering effective lectures–an infographic
  1. Rajnish K Gupta1,
  2. Monica Harbell2 and
  3. Eric S Schwenk3
  1. 1 Anesthesiology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee, USA
  2. 2 Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Phoenix, Arizona, USA
  3. 3 Anesthesiology, Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Rajnish K Gupta, Anesthesiology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN 37232, USA; raj.gupta{at}

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Modern educational techniques can help improve both the development and delivery of medical presentations, deviating away from text heavy slides that do not engage the audience. In this visual abstract, we summarize the nine key points that Harbell and O'Sullivan recommend to create and deliver a more effective medical lecture.1 At the core of the creation process is the development of actionable learning objectives that are presented as a concise story that includes the audience in the problem-solving process. The lecturer should use visual elements that enhance the message rather than relying on text as a crutch. During the actual presentation, the speaker should remain the primary focus which requires effective use of voice and body language, careful timing, lots of practice, and intentional engagement with the audience. Using well-designed slides with purposeful presentation techniques, we can expect future medical lectures, whether from the podium or on teleconferencing, to be more concise, interactive, and memorable.

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This study does not involve human participants.


We would like to acknowledge Jim Snively, artist, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, for graphic design of this infographic.



  • Twitter @dr_rajgupta, @ESchwenkMD

  • Contributors All coauthors have contributed to the creation and editing of the infographic and summary paragraph.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests RKG and ESS are Co-Associate Editors of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine. RKG is a Director at Large for the American Society of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine Board of Directors.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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