Most professional courses have projects, assignments and viva voce or viva that students have to prepare for.

Many students find it difficult to prepare for viva which is like an oral exam based on the syllabus or a project or assignment that you have prepared.

Let us look at some tips on how to prepare for viva:

# 1: Confidence

First and the most important aspect of preparation is your level of confidence. You need to tell yourself that you have made the project and prepared for it well so you are the expert; you know your stuff and that you have the ability to explain every details of your project to anybody who wants to know more about it.

Tip: Be confident in asking examiners to repeat a question or clarify anything.

#2: Examiners want you to pass

Students usually view their examiner in a negative perspective as if they are out there to make students suffer.

You need to change your perspective and make yourself understand that examiners want you to pass.

Even if they question every detail of your assignment, they are doing to find out how much thorough work you have done for that assignment. They may be trying to understand your assignment in detail.

#3: Make sure you know your work

Ensure that you read your project thoroughly before the viva with a critical eye. If there is anything that you have written that you are not sure about, or which you feel you might have justified more fully, spend time thinking about how you might respond if challenged on these aspects of your work in the viva.

#4: Mock sessions

You can practice appearing for viva by having mock viva sessions. Prepare likely questions that can be asked during a viva and practice answering.

Think about how you might elaborate, if they want you to continue speaking. Think about how you will behave: practice using gestures, eye contact and voice as you intend. Think about how to react and answer to the examiners if/when they have a negative reaction to your answer.

#5: Look presentable

You should try to make a proper effort to look presentable on your viva day. Looking good will help you boost your confidence. Wear decent and comfortable clothing and footwear.

You do not want anything distracting you on that day. Talk to classmates who have successfully gone through their viva and ask for their advice.

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