Difference Between Lecture and Seminar

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: April 30, 2023


Difference Between Lecture and Seminar

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Various lectures and seminars are being conducted for students who are interested in a particular subject. These days there is growth in every aspect of life, from as small biological topics as atoms to vast astronomical topics like space & time, expanding universe and many more. The depth of all subjects is growing; there is also progress in lectures and seminars on such content. Topics are discussed widely, and lectures are being conducted in every college & even in some companies; as a practice to stay updated with a company's subject matter. 

And things mentioned above are educational content, but there is also growth in many other sectors of life like political, financial, musical, technical, environmental, and even more. Due to growth in technology, these days there is growth and demand for lectures and seminars based on topics like Artificial intelligence, video creation, graphics designing, content creation, and social media. And also, one crucial role in all this is played by computer language. So much so, that learning computer language has become a life skill. 

The lectures & seminars can vary from topic to topic, but the way it is presented differs. The way it is understood as students or people, as an audience. The way everything is exhibited differs from one another, and below is the difference between our topics is simplified.

Lecture Vs. Seminar 

The difference between lectures and seminars is quite simple. Lectures are almost educational monologues, whereas the seminars can be like a meeting, everyone discussing and pitching in their ideas, or it can be like a meeting, with everyone discussing and pitching in their ideas. Many companies make sure they have seminars once in a while for any updates on particular subjects or how they should present their company on the foreign platform, national platform or even in some small or big college events. On the other hand, lectures are held in college, and very few companies do have a lecture, i.e., only if there is a new product or growth factor that needs to be explained by some expert.

Difference Between Lecture and Seminar in Tabular Form

Parameters Lecture Seminar
Definition Lectures are more like speeches on some thesis. Set of instructions in a particular subject. Seminars are subject-oriented discussions or training.
Conducted by Only one person addresses the student. Seminars can be conducted by one person or more than one person.
Modes The lecture is mostly one person talking, and the origin of the word lecture is from the Latin word that means to read aloud. In the seminars, there is an explanation and discussion.
Presentation One person explains the whole subject in depth with a follow-up Q&A session. More than one person discusses a particular chosen topic.
Understanding Lectures' understanding depends upon the sync of our understanding and the lecturer's approach towards teaching or the way he teaches. Topics are cleared as they are discussed, and questions and queries are solved. Hence, the message at the end of the seminar is clear.
No. of students It can be of any number, starting from a few 10-15 till 100. Interested participants or rather subject interested people also join in.

What is a Lecture? 

The lecture word has its origin in Latin. The word is Legere which means to read a text or read aloud. This explains quite simply what the lectures are; they can be even speeches from a political leader. 

While all of it is true, our listening ability should be at its peak while attending the lectures. We should be able to absorb the information by listening and later processing & understanding the concept. Develop a habit to learn things while listening as much as possible. In every lecture, you learn something various things that are new to you. Hence, enter the classroom with one mindset i.e., to learn something new. 

Lecture subjects can vary from educational, therapeutical, political, financial, and so on. As aforementioned, the number of lecturers & lectures has increased as the depth of the subject is exponentially widened, and so, various subjects are further dissected into more sub-subjects and further into more, sub-subjects. 

Lectures are mostly conducted in school, college and various classes. Even the pandemic couldn’t stop the flow of knowledge we get through numerous lectures. These past few years, due to COVID precautions there also have been online lectures available on many online platforms mostly YouTube, and almost all school, colleges and classes conducted their lectures online through various video calling Websites.

Different Types of Lectures 

  • Storytelling Lecture: - Everyone has a different way of teaching, and some do it better with storytelling. An instructor makes a story for the thesis that is too difficult to understand if plainly explained. The presentation of the story lecture is carried out; in typical narrative form for the development of characters. So, with interesting stories, even the tough thesis can be illustrated clearly, and many the student and lecturers find this trick better - to learn faster. 
  • Chalk & board Lecture: - Lectures where there is a requirement for chalk and board are the types of the lecture, which includes mathematical problems, proving a theorem, and numerous types of equations to solve. Such things are better explained in a classic way using chalk and board. Even the instructor has better control of the environment because the board provides a place to notice and monitor disruptive students. 
  • Online Lecture: - Using technology to our advantage is the best way to learn. And nowadays, everyone does that. Lectures can be available anywhere; it isn't necessary to go and join classes or courses. Some platforms have paid courses and some have free courses along with certification and life-long access to study material, which you can have access to remotely. Even the submission of any assignment is done, on a Laptop/PC and no paperwork is required. 
  • Oral lecture: - Oral lecture is just a normal lecture we attend in class and college. It's one person explaining things whilst reading, and making plots and diagrams, if necessary, on the blackboard. Oral lectures are preferable to me because you can have your doubts solved after the lecture or if the teacher allows you to ask anytime you can pop up your question and get the answer immediately. 
  • Multimedia lecture: - We tend to understand better in visual language. Many lectures & classrooms use slideshows with audio and video content of the legit course. The video not only contains the explanation of the topics but also the 3D view, step-by-step instructions, and procedures it's working and non-working. The most important points are highlighted in the presentation alongside the image they have put up.

What is a Seminar? 

A seminar is mostly defined as a research talk conducted by various organisations about their projects. Even the word seminar has its origin in the Latin word Seminarium. The seminar broadens the knowledge level and brings together like-minded people. 

It is like a workshop or training conducted by a company or any other professional organisation in colleges. But a seminar can also be held as a part of the conference. Hence, some seminars can resemble meetings, which often includes Q&A session, debates, and even some discussions are carried. More innovative ideas and thesis evolve through seminars. 

Seminars given by the company are mostly about company development stages, management & leadership, and also about how much academic growth will help you in the outside world. Even some industries visit college or classes as requested by college teachers & staff to help us guide towards our future. 

To teach us about what would be convenient for future planning and how would you fit in when you work congruously. Two or three experts from the company present a slideshow related to their company's past and present situation and teach things about their company and what value the company holds in today's market. They might even give away some minor edge about the plans of the company.

Different Types of Seminars 

  • Topical Seminars: - Topical seminars are topic-oriented seminars based on a single topic. Such seminars are arranged in many colleges by various companies, routinely with help of college staff. Many academic subjects are discussed in the depth and how the particular sector can be further dissected into a more detailed subject.  
  • PowerPoint Seminar: - The seminar conducted in the slideshow is very much engaging as it contains many contents such as important bullet points and various images related to the subject, some even contain videos. Various customization tools are used to make a PowerPoint slideshow simpler or fancier; depending upon the type of delivery the instructor wants to make, without a slideshow presentation, all seminars are incomplete. 
  • Conference Seminar: - These are the most etiquette seminars; such seminars are conducted in the big company to company while merging or between some government and private organizations. Different venues for these meetings are hotels and conference rooms. A Keynote speaker is appointed and the CEO and executive director of companies are present in the seminar. Valuable topics for the advancement of the city or company are discussed at the conference. These seminars are called symposiums. 
  • Workshop Seminar: - For a better understanding of the practical system of a company or any other system commonly used by companies is shown. These seminars are mostly held for broadening the senses at the practical level of your field of subject. The seminar might include the actual study material you'll be seeing in the industry. Such seminars as mostly set out in your practice room of the college. 
  • Soft skill Seminar: - Soft skill is a versatile skill you could learn. They are an essential part of one’s growth in maintaining a positive influence on plans and such seminars are taking place over the world again and again. Soft skill has become as important as any technical skill you have. Such skills are not taught in school or college. Therefore, many of the different organizations have started to put some good influence and conduct soft skill seminars.  

Main Difference Between Lecture and Seminar in Points

  • The seminar is comparatively more in detail and broad in the content of matter; in presentation and connects with real-life situations. 
  • The lecture is listening and having a Q&A session on the topic and some tests later on, but with the seminar, you have content out of the box; which will lead to debates and even discussion. 
  • Lectures are conducted by the instructor and teaching staff of every college, but the seminars are presented by industrialist people, businessmen, any start-up company, or maybe by some other organizations.
  • In a seminar, doubts are cleared after discussing them openly and in a lecture, our doubts are cleared in a doubt solving lecture.
  • Presentation by two or more seems more plausible than just one person explaining things. The switch in the people brings back the focus, seeing one person explaining things might slow you down.
  • On the other hand, some might find focusing on one person more attentive and efficient than keeping up with the pace of seminars of different instructors. 
  • A seminar even can be like a meeting & discussion in the conference hall, of the company. But lectures are only conducted in the classroom. 
  • Both lectures and seminars are presented even online and demonstrated by slideshows. Discussions take place in the webinar, and not the same thing happens in lectures.


There is a variety of things to learn in this new world. We need to take advantage of all the various ways that knowledge is bestowed on us. Hence, whether lectures or seminars, try to understand the difference and choose what works best for you. There's also a thin line of similarity in all the differences. But each seminar and lecture differs in presentation, venues, type of workshop each conducts, and even the number of instructors.  

Seminars are events for bringing together like-minded people and maintaining focus on a particular subject. The seminar keeps you updated with the latest development and progress in real-life. Lectures have a function of one person presenting all the subjects periodically arranged by classes or college in a scheduled manner.



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"Difference Between Lecture and Seminar." Diffzy.com, 2023. Wed. 20 Sep. 2023. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-lecture-and-seminar-981>.

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