The purpose of an introduction to public speaking course should be to provide a human communication overview. It should use independent study, textbook readings and exercises, group work, class discussions, library research, oral presentations and lectures to prepare students for successful lives by improving their oral and written communication skills. It should stress personal responsibility, ethics and the ability to understand and follow written and oral directions.
Students should learn the following:
To enlarge upon their critical thinking skills and to write their thoughts in an organized manner.
To write and deliver presentations in each of the three general purposes for speaking; persuasive, informative and entertainment.
To analyze an audience, to narrow a presentation topic and to tailor a presentation to meet their needs and the needs of their audience.
To write and deliver presentations in each of the four delivery styles: extemporaneous, manuscript, impromptu and memorized.
To use their voice and body effectively to become a successful presenter.
Strategies for effectively using evidence in presentations.
Strategies for creating and using visual aids to enhance their message.
Strategies for creating powerful, thought-provoking introductions and conclusions.
To study, and participate in, all three forms of human communication; mass, interpersonal and intrapersonal.
About the human communication process, how it works, why it sometimes doesn't work, and how to achieve effective communication.
To communicate effectively in small groups, teams and committees because they will learn to recognize the roles people play in group discussion and understand the roles that need to be played to lead a group to a consensus.
Problem-solving group techniques providing an organized, time-tested approach for reaching successful solutions.
Keeping Students Engaged
The students in my classes are adults. Long standing tenets of Adult Learning Theory (ALT) inform us that adult learners have the need and internal motivation to learn. They prefer active and self-directed learning situations with immediate application opportunities. Adult learners also prefer structured activities and situations. Knowing these principles, my classes utilize a variety of materials presented in ways that meet the needs of the students' preferred learning styles. I am making many of these materials available on this site so that other instructors can utilize them in their classrooms.
Meet the Author
My name is Steven Ginley. I've been teaching college-level speech since 1979. I've taught speech and theatre courses at Ball State University, Triton College, DeVry Institute of Technology in Addison, Northeastern Illinois University, Joliet Junior College, McHenry County College and Morton College. I've been teaching speech full-time at Morton College since August of 1998. I was born and raised in the Chicago area, spending most of my early life in Westchester. I've lived in Westmont, Illinois, since 1984. I'm currently living there with one wife (Kristi), six (6) cats (Indigo, Cairo, Miko, Li'l Graylo, Derek, and Tahani (Derek and Tahani are foster kittens), and one dog (Pup, actually Oedipup Rex). I enjoy reading. My favorite topics are the Civil War, Shakespeare and the Elizabethans, ancient Greeks and Romans, biographies, novels (my favorite novelist being Alexandre Dumas, pere), short stories, self-improvement books and books of quotations. I use the quotations in my classroom. During nice weather I may also be found gardening.
Questions? Comments? Drop us a line!
Steven Ginley, Instructor
Morton College, 3801 S. Central Ave., Cicero, Illinois 60804, United States