Public speaking is definitely a skill that gets better with practice. But another way to improve your public speaking skills is to watch others give speeches, and to intelligently analyze their strengths and weaknesses. In this assignment, you will be asked to view a public speech and analyze what you see and hear.
Please select one of the speeches below. You must watch and listen to the speech in order to answer all of the questions for this assignment.
- "The Last Lecture" from Professor Randy Pausch. If you have the time, I suggest that you watch this entire speech – it’s very meaningful for anyone who is trying to overcome life's obstacles and achieve their goals!
- "I Have a Dream"from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. An historic speech given by Dr. King and still an inspiration to millions. If you are only going to watch five minutes, I suggest that you begin your viewing at 12:00 minutes into the video.
- "We Choose to Go to the Moon" from President John F. Kennedy. The speech that inspired a nation to reach the moon!
- "Message for the Students"from President Barack Obama. A speech of inspiration to students that was televised live to all the classrooms in the country. (There is a two minute introduction by a student from the school, you can forward past that part.)
Choose One Speech (click on the blue hyperlink titles above to view the videos) and then address the following in paragraph format:
1. Who was the speaker you selected?
2. Did he grab your attention in the introduction?
3. What was the message and was it clear to you?
4. Describe in as much detail as possible, the speaker's visible physical delivery (nonverbal communication) - body language, gestures, posture, facial expressions, eye contact, movement such as walking around or remaining still, etc. Be thorough in your observation and descriptions of the physical delivery…include as much description as possible since it provides evidence of how valuable good physical delivery is to the success or failure of a presentation.
5. Describe in as much detail as possible, the speaker's vocal delivery (nonverbal communication/paralanguage) - volume, pitch, rate, inflection, articulation, etc. Be thorough in your evaluation and descriptions of the vocal delivery…include as much description as possible since it provides evidence of how valuable good vocal delivery is to the success or failure of a presentation.
6. Describe your overall impression of the speaker - were you affected by his/her presentation - were you influenced, entertained, and/or informed by this speaker?
7. Which of this speaker's delivery/presentation skills would you like to incorporate into your next public speaking opportunity and how do you think they'll help you?
Write your responses in paragraphs - total submission of at least 200 words.