Black Friday: Present Your Course with Confidence and Focus

Earn Black Friday Bonus Points

Make sure you’re earning the +25 bonus points for this task! Here’s how:

  1. Follow the steps in this article to script, rehearse, and record a lecture that has no filler words, tangents, or awkward pauses (No points will be awarded if we hear any “ums” or “uhs”!)
  2. Share your lecture video by uploading it to YouTube and then posting the link in the Udemy Studio (or just uploading it directly to Facebook) with the hashtag #BlackFriday2015 by October 16. Be sure to tell us in your post which task you’re submitting. The community and our Instructor Team will offer feedback on how well you did!
  3. After you’ve incorporated any feedback, upload the lecture video to your course curriculum. Now you’re one step closer to going for gold!

If you’re not a member of the Studio yet, apply to join here.

Prepared Delivery

Students value an instructor who is confident and focused. A significant number of student feedback comments across the marketplace cite the instructor’s delivery style as a positive aspect of taking the course. However, we also see a fair number of student feedback comments that cite the instructor’s delivery style as needing improvement. This means your style of presenting and delivering content has the power to impact student satisfaction in either direction – let’s make sure you’re tipping the scale in your favor!

For this bonus task, we challenge you to film and share a lecture video in which you don’t have any filler words (“um”, “uh”, “er”), rambles or tangents, or unnatural pauses. How do you accomplish this? By being 100% prepared when you hit that “record” button! And we’re here to help you prepare to, well… prepared. Follow the steps below to ensure the presentation of your course is smooth and satisfying for students.


Using your course outline as the foundation, list all the individual points you want to cover in the individual lecture. Your script could range anywhere from a list of bullet points to the exact word-by-word narration you’d like to deliver. Which way you go depends on your own teaching style and confidence level, as well as your chosen lecture format.

  • Lecture Format: If your planned lecture is a screencast explanation of using WordPress tools, then a bulleted list with abbreviated notes is a great way to go. On the other hand, if your planned lecture is a live action video of you telling a story or narrating a case study, then a detailed script can help you avoid ramblings and speak to the camera with confidence.
  • Personal Style: If you’re accustomed to recording your voice and feel comfortable with extemporaneous explanations, then maybe a word-by-word script isn’t needed. If speaking to the camera doesn’t come naturally to you, then we highly recommend writing a detailed script.

If you’re not sure which method is best for you, try both! Then take a look at both recordings. Does one have filler words and the other does not? That will decide which approach you should take and which video you should share with us!

If you decide to use a word-by-word script, check out the third video here for instructions on setting up a free autocue/teleprompter.


The more times you rehearse, the more comfortable you’ll feel. While scripting is great, you don’t actually want to sound scripted to your students. It’s important to come across as authentic, and sounding stilted can really hurt your authenticity score.

Luckily, multiple rehearsals can help you sound both natural and enthusiastic. And if you’re not speaking from a script, rehearsing can help your mind recall the words and phrases that work best, as well as help you avoid tangents and stay focused. Here are a few suggestions on how to get the most out of rehearsing:

  1. First, practice in front of the mirror.
  2. Then try rehearsing with a friend or colleague.
  3. And finally, rehearse in front of the camera, using your exact planned setup but without recording anything.


Make sure that your filming setup is one you feel at ease in. When setting up your recording space, consider the following:

  • Lighting: Is there a light shining in your eyes, making you squint or causing you discomfort?
  • Standing or sitting: Which makes you feel more comfortable? If you’re recording a screencast, you’ll probably want to sit. If you’re filming live action, standing is often more powerful and effective. If you choose to sit to record live action, ensure that your chair doesn’t swivel or bounce.
  • Camera position: If you’re filming live action, the camera should be at eye level, and far enough back that most of your upper body is in the frame.

Now that you’ve set up a recording space where you feel comfortable, get out your script and start recording! Here’s an example from instructor Anthony Alicea to get you inspired. Notice how Anthony presents his material with focus and confidence, and without any filler words, awkward hesitations, or rambles.

Ready to give it a try yourself? Just follow the steps at the top of this article!

2 thoughts on “Black Friday: Present Your Course with Confidence and Focus”

  1. Brother Bob says:

    Getting things organized and should have the upload done by tonight for this challenge. My “BONUS Video” (as I’m calling it) came out great and is a perfect addition to my course’s curriculum. 😉 CHEERS!

  2. José Eduardo says:

    I’m delightful of been part of this initiative. Looking forward to participating in this #BlackFriday2015 opportunity with #Udemy.

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