Stand up and be heard

An introduction to the world of public speaking with Ben Butler and Tedx Trinity

TEDx Trinity held a “How to give a TED talk” in the Global room yesterday to a full audience. It was delivered by Ben Butler who had given a talk at the TEDx Trinity event last year. He followed the protocol for giving a TED talk by

TEDx is a program of self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. The x in TEDx indicates that is an independently organized TED event. TED talks typically last for 18 minutes and focus on new ideas or an innovative way of looking at an existing idea.

TEDx Trinity started as a society run for and by students in 2016. They will have their annual conference in March-April 2018.


In order to give a TED talk, it is first vital to understand their foundation: The talk has to last exactly 18 minutes or less. Another important step is developing the idea. This is important because the idea has to be interesting to both the speaker and the audience.

The speaker has to be able to engage the audience and get them interested in what he or she is talking. The content and script are extremely important as that is the main part of what is being said. The normal format followed is to first introduce the idea, then talk about the idea and then conclude with the scope of the idea for the future.

Planning the slides is an essential part of giving the talk. The slides should not contain too much information. Rehearsing the talk is just as important as preparing it. One must rehearse the talk multiple times and improve it as much as possible. This is true of any public speaking.

Ben Butler said that the physiological response to nerves and excitement is the same. Before giving a speech, thinking about different things work for different people- some people think about the worst that could happen while some think about the best that could happen.

The attendees were divided into groups of 4 or 5 and each group was given a photograph to interpret however they wanted to and then come up with an idea for a potential TED talk. This was a very interesting activity. Ben Butler also kept the event lively with his humor.

TEDx Trinity is now accepting applications for their Student Speaker Conference. The best one or two speakers at the Student Speaker Conference will have the opportunity to give a TED talk at the annual TEDx Trinity conference.

This event was a learning experience for students who will be applying to speak at the Student Speaker Conference, as well as those who may not apply for the conference but can use Butler’s advice on public speaking when delivering presentations throughout the college year.