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Social Sci LibreTexts


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  • Review Questions

    1. What are the personal, professional and public benefits of enhancing your public speaking skills?

    2. What is the difference between the linear and transactional model of communication?

    3. Define and give an original example of each of the elements of the communication process.

    4. Which of the elements of the communication process do you think has the greatest impact on the way a message is interpreted. Explain.

    5. What are the three types of speeches? For each of the three types of speeches, give two examples of an occasion or situation in which that type of speech might be given.

    6. List the eleven speaking competencies. For each competency listed, describe the differences between the advanced speaker and the inexperienced speaker.


    1. Working in groups of 3 – 5, generate a list of the characteristics of ineffective speakers you have seen. Next, generate a list of the characteristics of the effective speakers you have seen. What three qualities do you believe are most important to be a successful speaker? Explain.

    2. Locate a speech on YouTube. While watching the speech, identify the strengths and weaknesses of the speaker’s content and delivery? What three things could the speaker improve on? What three things did you like about the speaker? If you were to deliver the speech, how would you do things differently?

    3. Locate a copy of the Public Speaking Competence Rubric at Read through each of the levels of each of the competencies, and try to determine what your level of skill is for each of the speaking competencies. If you are able, have a friend or colleague watch one of your speeches and ask him or her to evaluate your level of skill for each of the competencies. Compare your responses to see how much correspondence there is between your responses and the evaluator’s responses. In what areas are you strongest? What do you need to improve upon?


    Abstract Word: Words that refer to ideas or concepts that are removed from material reality.

    Axiology: A part of worldview; refers to an individual or group’s value system.

    Channel: The means through which the message travels.

    Communicator: The people in the interaction or speech setting who encode and decode messages simultaneously.

    Concrete Word: A word that describes a tangible object that can be perceived through the senses.

    Context: The communication rules that govern different physical settings and/or different types of relationships.

    Cosmology: A part of worldview; refers to the way individuals and groups see themselves in relation to other people and their view of their place in the universe.

    Cultural Noise: Differences in worldview that cause message interference.

    Decoding: The process of listening to words and interpreting the words so they are associated with a mental image.

    Encoding: The process of taking a mental image, associating the image with words, and then speaking those words.

    Epistemology: A part of worldview; refers to the way an individual or group acquires knowledge or what counts as knowledge.

    Listening: The psychological process of interpreting and making sense of the messages we receive.

    Message: The words, nonverbal behavior, or other signals transmitted from one person to another.

    Noise: Any thing that interferes with the message transmission or the encoding and decoding process.

    Nonverbal Behavior: All of the messages we send --- except for the words we say. Can include appearance, eye behavior, kinesics (body movement), proxemics (use of space), touch, time, and smell.

    Norms: The verbal and nonverbal rules (usually unspoken) that govern communicative behavior.

    Ontology: A part of worldview; refers to an individual’s or group’s belief system.

    Praxeology: A part of worldview; refers to the way an individual or group goes about tasks or solving problems.

    Psychological Noise: Message interference that results from disturbed or excited mental states.

    Physiological Noise: Message interference that results from bodily discomfort.

    Physical Noise: Message interference that results when the noise level (as measured in decibels) makes it difficult to hear a message.

    Public Speaking: The act of delivering a speech in front of a live audience.

    Worldview: The overall framework through which an individual sees, thinks about, and interprets the world and interacts with it.