Public Speaking Course and assignment overview

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So in this video, I want to give you a sense for what the course is about, and I think the best way to do that is to talk about our course goals, our course assignments, and our course schedule.
So, at the broadest level, I want this course to help you out as much as possible, as quickly as possible, and I mean, this should help you with your next presentation. Now at the broadest level, by the end of this course, you should have the skills and experience necessary to design and deliver speeches that are clear and compelling. All right, there’s a lot of ands in there, I know, it was kind of designed that way, but each term is important, so I want to go through each one. So first off, skills and experience. So this class focuses in on a core set of speech skills, and we’re going to refine those skills through experience, actually doing the assignments. It’s a speech class, and you’re going to have a ton of opportunities to speak. So next up we’ve got design and deliver. Now, both here are important, this isn’t simply a course in delivery, content matters. As a matter of fact, poorly planned content almost inevitably results in bad speaking. So we’re going to look at how to craft good speeches as well as how to deliver them well. And then finally, clear and compelling. So this class focuses on how to communicate your ideas clearly to an audience so they understand what you mean. Of course, just having them understand usually isn’t enough so we’re going to look at how to phrase and deliver ideas in a compelling way.
So those are the broad goals for the course. Now, we’re going to achieve those goals through the course assignment. There are three basic types of assignment in this class, we’ve got speeches, quizzes, and analysis. And, by point of clarification, right now I’m going to talk about all the assignments in class and you don’t need to complete all of these in order to pass the class, you only need to complete the required assignments to pass a class, and you can see which ones those are on the course website. The other assignments are in there to give you more practice and just more options. So let’s go ahead and begin with the speech assignments. Each speech really emphasizes a specific skill set, so, we’re going to begin with a short speech introducing yourself. This assignment allows us to practice good delivery, practice the peer review system that we’re going to use in the course, and figure out how to do good speech videos. Then we’re going to have the elevator speech, and in the elevator speech you’re going to write and deliver a concise description, okay? These are very short, about 30 seconds or so, this can be brief summaries of your job, or your interests, really the goal here is to focus in on concise writing that’s easy for audiences to remember. Then the key point speech is the main assignment for the course. It focuses on good content, organized clearly and delivered in an engaging way. And in fact, we’re probably going to spend, not probably, we will spend multiple weeks building and practicing different key point speeches.
We also have weekly quizzes. Now these quizzes aren’t just there to test your memory, they are also there to help you refine your speech judgement. So they’re going to ask you to evaluate different ways of organizing a speech, or phrasing an idea.
Finally we’ve got analysis assignments, and I include these analysis assignments because, one of the best ways to get better at performing speeches, is to get better at listening to speeches. So, in an analysis assignment what you’re going to do is, you’re going to watch a speech, evaluate it, read my analysis and the analysis of others.
Let’s go ahead and talk now about how our schedule is going to prepare us for those assignments. In the first week, we’re going to start off by establishing our framework for the study of public speaking. We’re going to talk about how rhetoric and linguistics can help us become better speakers. This week is really about understanding the nature of public speaking. Then we move on to the next module, in the second module we’re going to focus in on designing speeches. So we’ll start our preparations for the key point and elevator speeches at this point. From there we move on to the third week, the third module, and here we work on illustrating and delivering speeches. The focus of this week is on making a speech, delivering a speech that’s easy for an audience to follow along with. And then in the fourth module, we’re going to talk about good delivery, how to minimize your fear of public speaking, and how to engage an audience. And then in the final week of the course, we conclude, and this is also when you submit your final speech assignment. So, that’s a broad overview of the course goals, the course assignments, and course schedules, so let’s get to it. [MUSIC]