A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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I've gotten this comment many times myself, so you may be wondering, what should I do?

 

First, you have to decide if the delivery was really a problem or if it is just this student. I have had students tell me that I talk too fast, and others say I talk too slow. Obviously, I can’t make both of these groups of students happy, so I decided to simply talk at the speed that is comfortable for me. In the case of delivery speed, it is an easy fix since the video player allows students to playback the video at 0.75x or 1.5x, too. I also mention this in my introduction video, and the complaints about delivery speed have decreased.

If you get complaints about your dialect or accent, you do have to remember that you are serving an international audience. I am an American and I had a British student complain because my slides used the word “color” instead of “colour”. Again, you can’t please everyone, so pick a format and go with it. I’ve also had complaints that my “accent” is hard to understand because I speak “American-ese”. If you have a thick accent, it can be beneficial to take some vocal courses that help you minimize your accent, since this will make you easier to understand regardless of where your student is in the world. Often, international students seek out “American” or “British” accents because they are more common and easy to understand in the global marketplace.

If you get complaints that your delivery is “monotone” or “boring”, you should take that criticism and work to improve your delivery. Students want to be engaged and entertained. Try to use different peaks and valleys to your voice and tell stories as you teach. This will go a long way in creating engaging delivery.

 

Hopefully this helps a bit for some of you who are new to the platform and building your first courses. Remember, you can't please everyone, but do take the time to stop and think if they have a valid point!

Jason

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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I occasionally get told I talk too slow, but for others that is what they say they like about my presentation. A couple of years ago I decided to make a YouTube video where I tried to talk as fast as I see other YouTubers talk. It was only a five minute video and it felt like it was going to kill me trying to keep up that speed for five minutes. I have never done that again and wouldn't do it for a course, but it was interesting that no-one seemed to notice I was talking fast (for me) and that I was struggling throughout the video.

 

I saw a post somewhere in this community a few weeks ago mentioning about mentioning that you can adjust video speed. I have obviously always known this, but for some reason never thought of it as a solution to suggest but think it is a great idea and will likely do this.

 

All the best

Dan

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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I think that pretty much sums it up.

  • I have the speed up/slow down lecture.
  • I worked on clearer pronounciation.
  • I have had my subtitles all updated.

/high five @JasonDion for the excellent writeup.


Thor Pedersen - IT , Project Management, and Cyber Security trainer

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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I occasionally get told I talk too slow, but for others that is what they say they like about my presentation. A couple of years ago I decided to make a YouTube video where I tried to talk as fast as I see other YouTubers talk. It was only a five minute video and it felt like it was going to kill me trying to keep up that speed for five minutes. I have never done that again and wouldn't do it for a course, but it was interesting that no-one seemed to notice I was talking fast (for me) and that I was struggling throughout the video.

 

I saw a post somewhere in this community a few weeks ago mentioning about mentioning that you can adjust video speed. I have obviously always known this, but for some reason never thought of it as a solution to suggest but think it is a great idea and will likely do this.

 

All the best

Dan

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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Dan!

Quoting you...

it felt like it was going to kill me trying to keep up that speed for five minutes."

😁😁😁

You got me laughing hard.

I can imagine the subtle pains in your diaphragm.

 

Anyway...I will be putting a caveat at the beginning of the Description of each course.

 

"This course IS NOT for those who are particular about a certain accent for delivery regardless of the substance of the course content" 

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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Some great tips @JasonDion 

I’ve had the odd comment on my English accent but the ones that stand out for me are when people say I talk too much!

Now, obviously I talk a fair bit otherwise I’d just be stood there smiling at them! However, I have worked on this with each new course I do so that I don’t over explain..... but still explain enough!

As you said, you can’t pkease everyone 😁

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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I think that pretty much sums it up.

  • I have the speed up/slow down lecture.
  • I worked on clearer pronounciation.
  • I have had my subtitles all updated.

/high five @JasonDion for the excellent writeup.


Thor Pedersen - IT , Project Management, and Cyber Security trainer

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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Hey,

Regarding your tip

" If you have a thick accent, it can be beneficial to take some vocal courses that help you minimize your accent, since this will make you easier to understand regardless of where your student is in the world. "

 

Can you recommend a course or videos to help with this?

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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I don't remember the name of the course, but I know there is an instructor on Udemy whose entire course library is really focused on doing just that.

 

Since I was lucky enough to be born with a neutral "american" accent, I never had to worry to much about it.

 

My wife (@Tamera Dion) , on the other hand, grew up in the southern part of America and used to have a thick southern accent. She studied drama/theater in school, so she worked really hard to lose her accent. Now, she has no accent (unless she has a bit too much to drink)!

Jason

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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So Practicing with other Americans who have no accent helped your wife reduce her accent? 

Can you recall the name of the instructor who gives courses that help with that issue

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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Anyway...I will be putting a caveat at the beginning of the Description of each course.

 

"This course IS NOT for those who are particular about a certain accent for delivery regardless of the substance of the course content" 

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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I think what matters the most in any delivery is the proper use of pauses... Using them occasionally gives space for a student to grasp information and take some time to understand and think about while not missing anything and it also feels like a conversation between the instructor and the student's mind...

 

As for the accent... I think any instructor should go by what is being practiced universally, to me, as much as a student should fully understand whats being  said.... An instructor should also feel comfortable explaining a topic so he/she wont miss anything, also if the accent was hard to follow then captions have always been a good solution not to miss any word...

 

Making it as storytelling while still maintaining seriousness can keep engagement at its maximum levels to any student... If i could summarize the whole delivery experience.

 

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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This is my first time replying on this forum. I have had a lot of experience doing public speaking and giving public readings (reading what is already written on the page). I am also a professional writer. I have noticed that most people rush too much when they are in front of an audience. They do not pause at the end of sentences or where there's a natural pause. Your punctuation, or what you imagine as punctuation, can be your guide. If you really want to emphasize something, make it stand out by contrasting it from the other things  you say. Think of those statements as a single-sentence paragraph.

 

Another thing is what some people call "vocal variety." This mean speeding up sometimes, slowing down, pausing, and varying your pitch. Remember to breathe, too. While doing video you have to imagine an audience. Look right at your audience. Don't stare, but make sure you are communicating with your eyes.

 

Use the punchline effect. End each sentence with a strong word. Take the word "death," for instance. The impact of that word increases if it is at the end of your sentence. In stand-up comedy we were told to avoid peppering our acts with too many swear words. The reasoning, which  I see as sound, was that they will lose their shock value and power if you overuse them. The same goes with any word. If you want to shock, surprise, enlight, or delight, remember not to overuse your most powerful or shocking words.

 

Smile! And be yourself! Avoid talking like a robot even if you really know your stuff. Don't be afraid to use colloquialisms but at the same time, be aware of your international audience. You will need to be very careful with slang that could be misunderstood.

 

Mostly, Be friendly. This will help your audience trust you more. I have seen presenters act too animated, but usually, they are not expressive enough. You want the audience to identify with you. Be personal, but not so personal that you seem to be only talking about yourself. If you are presenting a skill, you want to show them that "a person just like me" can learn these things and become a pro.

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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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After years of training, I have understood that what you think of yourself matters and not what others think. Keep up the good work and keep going forward. Only you know your style of training delivery and uniqueness matters. Getting the right audience who need your course and value your work matters. You will anyways try to give much better than before always. I make many videos and some student/competitors comment and give false statements. First, analyse and see the comments you see are true/fasle. Mostly, it is false. Sometimes, I have had trainers who work just to look at the training videos and give abusive feedbacks which a student has never given.Find the truth. Irrespective of the feedback, there are many future students needing your course and reviews do not matter. All you are trying to do is to help others learn. Your accent, pace does not matter much when you give video tutorials and many see and learn rather than hear and learn.. The videos I make on youtube get very positive comments and the same video on Udemy makes some give strange reviews mostly due to unpredictable nature of customers.They do not know what they want.Do they want your accent/pace? . People hate to pay money and some get angry that they have paid 5$ for a 5000$ worth course which you spent months to do. Some people love to bring others down and I have seen a lot of such cases on Udemy where free courses get unwanted reviews. Get the right audience and never make your course free.
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Re: A student said they didn’t like my delivery. What do I do?

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I have begun to create my first course on Udemy and researched other similar themes that were already published to gauge the interest level and relevance.  I noticed when watching the free previews that they were usually American and therefore not only was the process unlike that I was going to cover, the terminology was drastically different.  I therefore decided to put a comment into my prerequisites / requirements section to make it clear who the course is for and who is not for, and then I will include this verbally in the introdution video.

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