Course Description

This course explores the fundamental principles of speaking in public situations and the preparation and delivery of informative and persuasive presentations. Subjects include: ethics in public speaking; audience analysis; selecting and researching speech topics; citing sources; constructing well-reasoned arguments; extemporaneous delivery; and peer evaluation. Students are expected to develop outlines and speaking notes, use visual aids, and improve on verbal and nonverbal delivery skills. (3 credits; Core COMM; Flex Core Individual and Society)

Free Open Educational Resource Textbook

Stand up, Speak out: The Practice and Ethics of Public Speaking (PDF also available on Blackboard)

Learning Outcomes and Assessment Methods

Course Learning Outcomes Assessment Methods
Gather, interpret, and assess information from a variety of sources and points of view. Cite sources in three places. Assessment is based on oral and written speech assignments that require synthesizing varied perspectives from multiple types of information. As with all college assignments, all outside research must be cited.
Evaluate evidence and arguments analytically, and produce well-reasoned written and oral arguments using evidence to support conclusions. Assessment of analytical skills used to develop arguments for presentations; class discussions; and oral/written assignments/ exams. Claims must be supported by evidence and cited meticulously.
Articulate and assess ethical views and their underlying premises, including uses of data and other information resources to respond to problems and questions. Assessment is based on students’ understanding of ethical and culturally-informed speaking—typically demonstrated through verbal/nonverbal communication; using supporting material; building arguments; providing constructive peer feedback, and displaying tolerance of other values/beliefs.
Identify and engage with local, national, or global events, trends or ideologies, and analyze their impact on individual or collective decision-making. Speech topics must be topical and relevant to current events. Demonstrated through research and oral/written assignments, exams and discussions.
Demonstrate the skills to compose and present appropriate verbal and nonverbal messages to diverse audiences. Assessment based on formal and informal speeches and participation in oral discussions throughout the semester. This includes responding to the instructor and to other students.
Demonstrate effective use of varied presentational aids and communication technologies to enhance their speeches. Student computer skills are evaluated through use of online learning platforms (Blackboard) and based on the effective and purposeful use of visual aids using digital presentation technologies
Demonstrate the skills necessary to compose/create and present informative and persuasive messages. Assessment is based on the development of an informative and persuasive speech, from selecting topics, gathering data, organizing outlines, citations, delivering an audience centered messages, and providing constructive critiques.
Demonstrate competence in active and effective listening skills. Assessment is based on observation, peer evaluations, class discussions, and class activities.
Demonstrate observational and critical evaluation skills by critiquing student speeches in an appropriate fashion in oral/written format. Students will critique speeches throughout the semester. Assessment can include both oral and/or written format.