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Leadership Activity and Completing the Application Form

Leadership Activities & Presentation Guidance

Leadership Activities & Presentation Guidance

Your leadership activity must have been undertaken whilst a student at the University of Exeter. Any role (voluntary or paid) where you are clearly demonstrating leadership skills may contribute to your Exeter Leaders Award. Please bear in mind when choosing your leadership position that you will have to draw on this experience to prove - in detail - how you've developed as a leader in this role.

Your leadership activity should not be related to your degree programme, for example, your leadership activity cannot be a project you have led as part of your module.

Your leadership role must allow you to reflect on and clearly demonstrate how you have shown leadership skills for your application to be approved. Please note that as this is a reflective exercise, you cannot choose an activity that you have not yet undertaken. Please look at the questions below to see if your leadership role is appropriate.

  • Outline your role as a team leader and list your responsibilities. 
  • What different sources have you used to gather feedback from others on your performance as a team leader? Give an example of how you have used feedback to identify an area for your own personal improvement.  
  • Describe the skills/competencies that you need to develop to help you improve as a team leader. Why have you identified these skills/competencies? 
  • What actions do you plan to undertake to develop these skills/competencies and what is your target date(s) for completion? 
  • How will you determine if you have been successful in your improvements? 


Some examples of leadership activities that students have used in the past include: 

Presentation Guidance Notes

The Leaders Award Presentation is designed to replicate graduate-level job interview presentations, so it is important to approach it with an appropriate degree of professionalism.

The presentation itself will last ten minutes, and you will be expected to give detailed examples of, and reflect on your leadership activity. We recommend that you practice your presentation to ensure it meets this time requirement. There will also be 5 minutes for questions. You will be expected to attend all of the 2-hour long session in order for you to observe presentations delivered by other students and participate in a peer review. 

You should provide an outline of your leadership role, what you did and what impact your actions had on other people around you. The same leadership activity that has been used in the application form should be reflected on in the presentation. 

You need to demonstrate to what extent you:  

  • Understand the role of a leader 

  • Show that you can assess your own effectiveness  

  • Plan activities for your own leadership development 

Covering the following will help you achieve this: 

  • Defining leadership and describing your duties and your responsibilities as a leader 

  • How you fit into the organisational hierarchy and the limits to your authority 

  • The importance of effective leadership style and effectiveness 

  • Feedback you have gained on your leadership, preferably using more than one method 

  • Self-reflection with examples of lessons learnt 

  • Your own leadership development needs with clear (SMART) objectives to address these 

Make sure you back up any claims you make with evidence and examples. If your presentation does not meet these criteria you may be asked to deliver it again on another occasion in order to complete your Exeter Leaders Award. 

You will be presenting to up to four other students and the Exeter Leaders Award Panel (usually two people); composed of members of the Career Zone Team. Choose visual aids that will help you to get your messages across, not make it more complicated.  If you use PowerPoint slides, do think about the volume of content on each slide. Don’t read from a script, but find a way of having prompts; notes, index cards, a ‘mind map’ or whatever else works for you. 

The staff panel will give you feedback on your presentation style, including body language and manner of delivery. This presentation is designed to prepare you for the type of presentation you may be required to give as part of the selection and recruitment process, and the feedback given is intended to help you improve in this area. 


We are committed to making the Presentation to Panel accessible to all. If you have any questions or would like to discuss any accessibility requirements, please get in touch with us at

For more information and support on equality, inclusion and diversity please see our specific EDI pages.

The components set out above are to be viewed as an indication of the criteria and level of commitment required to complete The Exeter Award and Leaders Award. The University, Students' Guild and Students' Union reserve the right to change this structure in part or full at any point without prior warning.