This problem can be quite challenging. Large lecture halls, even new ones, can have many problems for students, simply because of bad lighting, bad sightlines, or inadequate acoustics.

  • Look into forms of voice amplification, if the room is not equipped with a sound system. It’s hard to understand a new vocabulary, if you can’t really hear the words. If you, as lecturer, like to walk around, draw on the board, or do other things that would move you away from the podium, ask if there is a wearable form of amplification. If you have a soft voice, amplification can save you the stress of having to speak outside of your natural range. Consider a lecture-capture solution if the acoustic problems are particularly bad – it’s also a great way to simplify the review material you post for your students
  • Post your course materials to the course website just before class, so that students can follow your visuals on their own screens. If this is impracticable, post copies of your slides or course notes to the website just after class, while student memory is fresh
  • Look into tools such as tablet computers, or effective uses of pens in PowerPoint, so that you can combine your presentation and written notes into one point of focus
  • If budget allows, ask if the room can have several screens. This way, unfortunate architectural features can be mitigated by moving copies of the central content closer to learners