Online Course - Introduction to Public Speaking, University of Washington, Coursera

Publish Date: Nov 09, 2015

About this Course

A report from the National Association of Colleges and Employers shows that employers want job candidates with strong communication skills. Similarly, educational success also requires the ability to articulate your thoughts clearly. In this class, we will study the principles of public speaking; critically examine our own and others’ speeches through interactive practice. Unlike many oral communication courses and textbooks, this class spends a fair bit of time working through the unique traits of oral versus written communication in order to help students prepare speeches that are easier to deliver orally and understand aurally. The class's focus on understanding the key parts of an argument and drafting clear and concise arguments translates directly to other academic assignments. In service of this goal, we will study the principles of argumentation and arrangement; critically examine our own speeches and the speeches of others. By becoming a student of public speaking, you join a long history of rhetorical study dating back to ancient Greece.

Subtitles available in English, Ukrainian
18 hours videos, quizzes, and peer assessments


Week 1

Welcome to Introduction to Public Speaking!

  1. Course Materials
  2. Course Overview
  3. Getting Started: A Rhetorical Approach to Public Speaking
  4. The Differences Between Literacy and Orality
  5. Summary
  6. Introductory Speech Assignment
Week 2

Designing Impromptu Speeches

  1. Module Materials
  2. What is the Impromptu Speech? Why Should I Do It?
  3. Outlining the Elemental Components in a Speech
  4. Inventing, Arranging, and Phrasing Your Main Points in an Impromptu
  5. Supporting Your Claims with Evidence
  6. Evaluating Impromptu Speeches
  7. Summary
Week 3

Delivering Impromptu Speeches

  1. Discussing Your Evidence
  2. Introductions, Transitions, and Conclusions
  3. Fear of Public Speaking
  4. Delivery: Breathing, Pacing, and Movement
  5. Evaluating Impromptus, Round 2
  6. Summary
  7. Impromptu Speech Assignment
Week 4

Introduction to Informative Speaking!

  1. What is the Informative Speech?
  2. A Speech Preparation Process
  3. Planning an Informative Speech
  4. Informative Speech Goals
  5. Evaluating Informative Speeches, Round 1
  6. Summary
Week 5

Designing Informative Speeches

  1. Developing Your Key Ideas
  2. Fleshing Out Your Arrangement and Support
  3. Discussing Your Support
  4. Evaluating Informative Speeches, Round 2
  5. Summary
Week 6

Delivering Informative Speeches

  1. Informative Introductions and Conclusions
  2. Ethos Overview
  3. Informative Ethos
  4. Informative Delivery and Note Use
  5. Vocal Variety and Pausing
  6. Evaluating Informative Speeches, Round 3
  7. Summary
  8. Informative Speech Assignment
Week 7

Persuasive Speaking Basics

  1. What is the Persuasive Speech?
  2. Status Quo and Stock Issues
  3. Stock issues Analysis and Development
  4. Summary
Week 8

Designing Persuasive Speeches

  1. Persuasive Counter-Arguments
  2. Calls to Action
  3. Persuasive Arrangement
  4. Fallacies
  5. Persuasive Evaluation, Round 1
  6. Summary
Week 9

Delivering Persuasive Speeches

  1. Strategic Language Overview
  2. Strategic Language Analysis
  3. Stylistic Language
  4. Delivering Your Style Well
  5. Persuasive Evaluation, Round 2
  6. Summary
  7. Persuasive Speech Assignment
Week 10

Course Conclusion

  1. Course Review
  2. Next Steps and Thank Yous
  3. Final Quiz

This course is self-paced, with suggested deadlines to help you keep on track.

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Further Official Information

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