Welcome to Episode 7 of Our Student Voice.

To view and interact with the introductory video, click on Start Here in the video screen.

Click here to view a larger sized video in a separate tab.


As a Class Representative, you will find that you are communicating every day as part of your role. This may be in written, verbal and/or visual form, in person or online.  

Effective communication is essential to understand and being understood.

This section will support you to communicate with IMPACT to ensure you are you able to convey your message effectively and in a way that achieves your goals.

As a class representative, or as a student in TU Dublin, it is important that you remember how to make an IMPACT when communicating:

I is for Intent: Know the objective of your communication – what do you want to achieve?

M is for Message: Be clear in your message – how are you saying what you want?

P is for Platform: Design your message for the platform – are you going to use email, present at a committee, or speak in a meeting?

A is for Audience: Know your audience and put your message in the right context for them.

C is for Confident and Convincing: Show that you believe in your message, and yourself. The way you communicate is as important as the message.

T is for Timing: Communicate at the right time and keep to time - or keep to length if writing.

What is your communication objective?

Consider asking yourself:

  • To whom do you want to speak?
  • What do you want to say?
  • What do you want them to know, do, think or feel as a result?

Jot down a point for each.

We generally communicate to do one or a combination of the following:

  • persuade
  • influence
  • sell
  • inform
  • educate
  • describe
  • inspire
  • demonstrate knowledge

Start with your objective and then work backwards to decide the best way to communicate it. 

Clarity of message is critical. Consider: if you only had 30 seconds ( or 60 words) to communicate what would you say. This will help you really distil your message down to what’s important.

Try to appeal to both the head and the heart in your message. Remember ‘emotion often drives motion’. 

Try to convey the benefits, suggested ideas and potential solutions.

Good message structure

  • Tell them what you are going to communicate about.
  • Communicate it
  • Quickly summarise your message at the end

This is especially good for presentations.


  • Be professional and don’t over personalise.
  • Always try to be objective and avoid blaming


When you have constructed what you want to say, critique your message. Be that annoying child in the back of the car and ask "why is that?" four times. This will help you get to the real essence of your message and to ensure its really targeted. 

What is the communication platform or method to be used for your message?

Do you have choice in this or does the meeting or event dictate how you have to present?

What are the benefits/restriction of the chosen or prescribed one?

  • Written (report/email/ article)
  • Verbal/face to face meeting
  • Presentation
  • Aural - recording
  • Video with graphics information/ voice over etc
  • Combination of above

As well as in person communication, a variety of communication technologies can be used.

It is crucial to know your audience well. 

Try to put yourself in their shoes. What speaks to them? What are their challenges?

In advance, think of the hardest question you could be asked and answer it in your communication.


Most people operate on the WIIFM principle - "What’s In It For Me" or "What It Impacts For Me."

Bearing this in mind can really help guide your message for that audience.  

People generally want benefits and solutions and minimal negative impact. 

Try to be confident and convincing.

You have something valuable to say. Show you believe in it and believe in yourself, then your audience will more likely buy into you and your message.

The way we communicate our message is as important as what we say. 

Body language

  • Adopt good posture; relaxed yet alert.
  • Maintain eye contact
  • Use gesture appropriately.
  • Don’t be afraid to smile. It helps everyone relax.


  • Project your voice as if speaking to person a little further away.


  • Vary your voice tone and pitch. It helps keep interest.
  • If writing use an active voice and active verbs e.g. “we have analysed ; reviewed; I/ we believe”. “This course of action will deliver xyz outcomes / benefits etc”. 

Communicate at the right time and keep to time (or length if writing).  

Practicing in advance can really help this - especially when making a presentation. 

In a meeting, listen actively and then respond.  

If necessary don’t be afraid to seek further clarity by asking a question.


Your audience has limited time to engage, so if you communicate for and with IMPACT, you give yourself the best chance of achieving your communication goals.

These learning activities are designed to help you develop the knowledge and skills required for this episode. These learning activities are also a requirement for the Active Class Representative, Curriculum Co-Designer, and Quality Assurance Expert Digital Badges.

Learning Activity 7.1. Past Presentation

Think about a great lecture or presentation you attended. Use IMPACT to break down and evaluate the approach to communication. Identify three lessons you can learn from this communication.

If you are applying for a Digital Badge, include this (or a link to this) in your E-Portfolio.

Learning Activity 7.2. Future Presentation

List three concerns that you might have about communicating your message to others. What can you do to help overcome these concerns?

If you are applying for a Digital Badge, include this (or a link to this) in your E-Portfolio.

Visit the Library and look at the various different books on Communication.

Search for and review a range of online resources on Communication.