Public Speaking COMM-111

stage fright

anxiety over the prospect of giving a speech in front of an audience


a hormone released into the bloodstream in response to physical or mental stress

positive nervousness

controlled nervousness that helps energize a speaker for her or his presentation


mental imaging in which a speaker vividly pictures himself or herself giving a successful presentation

critical thinking

focused, organized thinking about such things as the logical relationships among ideas, the soundness of evidence, and the differences between fact and opinion


the person who is presenting an oral message to a listener


whatever speaker communicates to someone else


the means by which a message is communicated


the person who receives the speaker's message

frame of reference

the sum of a person's knowledge, experience, goals, values, and attitudes. No two people can have the same frame of reference


the messages, usually nonverbal, sent from a listener to a speaker


anything that impedes the communication of a message. Interference can be external or internal to listeners


the time and place in which speech and communication occurs


the belief that one's own group of culture is superior to all other groups or cultures


the vibration of sound waves on the eardrums and the firing of electrochemical impulses in the brain


paying close attention to, and making sense of, what we hear

appreciative listening

listening for pleasure or enjoyment

empathetic listening

listening to provide emotional support for a speaker

comprehensive listening

listening to understand the message of a speaker

critical listening

listening to evaluate a message for purposes of accepting or rejecting it

spare "brain time

the difference between the rate at which most people talk (120 to 150 words a minute) and the rate at which the brain can process language (400 to 800 words a minute)

active listening

giving undivided attention to a speaker in a genuine effort to understand the speaker's point of view

key-word outline

an outline that briefly notes a speaker's main points and supporting evidence in rough outline form


keeping the audience foremost in mind at every step of speech preparation and presentation


a process in which speakers seek to create a bond with the audience by emphasizing common values, goals, and experiences


the tendency of people to be concerned above all with their own values, beliefs, and well-being

demographic audience analysis

audience analysis that focuses on demographic factors such as age, gender, religion, sexual orientation, group membership, and racial, ethnic, or cultural background


creating an oversimplified image of a particular group of people, usually by assuming that all members of the group are alike

situational audience analysis

audience analysis that focuses on situational factors such as the size of the audience, the physical setting for the speech, and the disposition of the audience toward the topic, the speaker, and the occasion


a frame of mind in favor or opposed to a person, policy, belief, institution, etc.

fixed-alternative questions

questions that offer a fixed choice between two or more alternatives

scale questions

questions that require responses at fixed intervals along a scale of answers

open-ended questions

questions that allow respondents to answer however they want

supporting materials

the materials used to support a speaker's ideas. The three major kinds of supporting materials are examples, statistics, and testimony


a specific case used to illustrate or represent a group of people, ideas, conditions, experiences, or the like

brief example

a specific case referred to in passing to illustrate a point

extended example

a story, narrative, or anecdote developed at some length to illustrate a point

hypothetical example

an example that describes an imaginary or fictitious situation


numerical data


the average value of a group of numbers


the middle number in a group of numbers arranged from highest to lowest


the number that occurs most frequently in a group of numbers


quotations or paraphrases used to support a point

expert testimony

testimony from people who are recognized experts in their fields

peer testimony

testimony from ordinary people with firsthand experience or insight on a topic

direct quotation

testimony that is presented word for word


to restate or summarize a source's ideas in one's own words

quoting out of context

quoting a statement in such a way as to distort its meaning by removing the statement from the words and phrases surrounding it

preparation outline

a detailed outline developed during the process of speech preparation that includes the title, specific purpose, central idea, introduction, main points, sub points, connectives, conclusion, and bibliography of a speech

visual framework

the pattern of symbolization and indentation in a speech outline that shows the relationships among the speaker's ideas


a list of all the sources used in preparing a speech

speaking outline

a brief outline used to jog a speaker's memory during the presentation of a speech

delivery cues

directions in a speaking outline to help a speaker remember how she or he wants to deliver key parts of the speech

nonverbal communication

communication based on a person's use of voice and body, rather than on the use words


a speech that is written out word for word and read to the audience

impromptu speech

a speech delivered with little or no immediate preparation

extemporaneous speech

a carefully prepared and rehearsed speech that is presented from a brief set of notes

conversational quality

presenting a speech so it sound spontaneous no matter how many times it has been rehearsed


the loudness or softness of the speaker's voice


the highness or lowness of the speakers voice


changes in the pitch or tone of a speaker's voice


a constant pitch or tone of voice


the speed at which a person speaks


a momentary break in the vocal delivery of a speech

vocalized pause

a pause that occurs when a speaker fills the silence between words with vocalization such as "uh," "er," and "um

vocal variety

changes in a speaker's rate, pitch, and volume that give the voice variety and expressiveness


the accepted standard of sound and rhythm for words in a given language


the physical production of particular speech sounds


a variety of a language distinguished by variations of accent, grammar, or vocabulary


the study of body motions as a systematic mode of communication


motions of a speaker's hands or arms during a speech

eye contact

direct visual contact with the eyes of another person

informative speech

a speech designed to convey knowledge and understanding


anything that is visible, tangible, and stable in form


a systematic series of actions that leads to a specific result or product


anything that happens or is regarded as happening


a belief, theory, idea, notion, principle, or the like


a statement that depicts a person, event, idea, or the like with clarity and vividness


a statement of the similarities among two or more people, events, ideas, etc.


to present one's ideas in human terms that relate in some fashion to the experience of the audience

what makes us have stage fright?

fear of humiliation, concern over being unprepared, pressure to perform

how to reduce anxiety?

acquire experience, prepare, think positively, select appropriate topic, focus on message, channel nervous energy (visual aids, move around)

what is developed in the body of speech?

logical divisions, reasons, specific steps

how to arrange main points?

chronologically, topically, spatially, cause and effect, problem/solution

types of connective words/phrases

transitions, internal preview, internal summary, signpost


indicates speaker has finished one thought and is moving onto another

internal preview

statement in body of speech indicating what the speaker will discuss next

internal summary

statement summarizing preceding points


brief statement (1 word/phrase) showing where speaker is or focussing attention on key ideas (next, first, second...)

what are some attention getters? (MIDTERM)

-anecdotes (storytelling, narration)
-startling fact/action
-humor (her fav)
-personal experience
-reference to historical event; preceding speeches/occasion

why establish credibility?

shows the audience that you know what you're talking about and establishes goodwill

what is a preview?

statement in the intro, identifies main points to be discussed in body paragraphs, a map of what to expect

purpose of a conclusion

signal the end of the speech, summarize, reinforce central idea, motivate audience to respond

ways to conclude

-reference to introduction (her fav)
-appeal to action

types of supporting material (MIDTERM)


Examples (types)

emotional/quality connection, engage minds eye, connect to audience, interest
types: brief (short), extended (narrative/anecdote), hypothetical ("what if")


quantify, number connection
-use reliable sources
-quantify ideas
-use sparingly
-identify sources


quotes or paraphrases used to support point
-expert testimony: from recognized experts
-peer testimony: from ordinary people with first hand experience, in sight on topic


comparisons, known to unknown, help listeners understand unfamiliar ideas

Power of delivery (Nonverbal Expectancy Theory)

expect good delivery, eye contact, etc. (audience)

Delivery (you could lose...)

interest and credibility

Delivery (emotional connections) (Emotional Contagion Theory)

audience will experience same emotion as speaker

Delivery (audiences)

they believe what they see (words need to live up to visuals)

Methods of delivery

-manuscript (read)
-extemporaneous (persuasively/informatively about current events/politics)

Characteristics of effective delivery

-eye contact
-facial expression
-personal appearance

Importance of eye contact

-establish in introduction

types of gestures

-contradicting (avoid)


-paragraphs message (move after each different point)
-invites interest


strength/power, credibility

facial expression

-key role in expressing thought, emotions, and attitudes
-consistent with message


one of most important delivery tools, extends meaning of words
components of voice:
-pitch (variety makes it interesting)
-rate (affects learning/interest/memory)
-pauses filled pause=bad if too much)

advantages of visual aids


kinds of visual aids

-other people
-multimedia presentations