Tag Archives: public speaking

Readings on Pathos for next week

9 Feb

Next week we’ll start discussing some new theories that will help you to better adapt your message to the audience.  In particular, we’ll start discussing Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and Monroe’s Motivated Sequence, and how to use these theories in planning your speeches.

Here are some links to read and consider before Monday’s class:

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Monroe’s Motivated Sequence

  • Monroe’s Motivated Sequence by Mike Berry. This site offers a good explanation, plus has an outline of a sample speech that uses the sequence.

TEDx talk on public speaking

31 Jan

What sort of critiques could you offer for this speech on public speaking? What was done well, and what could be improved?


27 Jan
  • About.com’s grammar and composition’s author is the prof who first introduced me to rhetoric, Richard Nordquist. Here’s his page on using transitional expressions — mainly in a written context, but some of the principles here could translate into your oral presentations.

The power of nonverbal communication

20 Jan

One of the first ways to connect to your audience is to give them eye contact.  Looking at who you’re speaking to is a great way to make a pathos connection — but just glancing their way isn’t enough.  The way you look at your audience can also send them messages to interpret.

Here’s one of my favorite film clips that illustrates this point:

For more insight on the role of nonverbal communication, check out this post by Nick Morgan on What happens when your words and body language don’t match?

Speech as Case Study: Martin Luther King, Jr.

16 Jan

Today is Martin Luther King Jr. day in the States, which is a federal holiday commemorating the work of this important civil rights leader.  In honor of today, here’s his most famous speech, “I Have A Dream”:

Why is this speech so memorable? Here are a few links that provide some analysis:

and here is one of my favorite communication gurus, Nancy Duarte, examining why this speech was so rhetorically effective:

Keep in mind that a big part of RCM 401 is being able to provide insightful commentary on your colleagues’ presentations.  Analyses like these may give you some tips in what to look for as you evaluate speeches this term.

Kent Phillips Public Speaking Competition, *this Monday!*

13 Jan

Join us! Several students who have taken RCM 401 will be contestants this year.

For more background on the U of S alumnus Kent Phillips (who the competition is in honor of), here’s his entry in the Huskies Hall of Fame.

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