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1: Introduction to Public Speaking

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    The purpose of this chapter is to familiarize readers with the basic concepts of communication and public speaking. The chapter begins with a description of the personal, professional, and public benefits of learning more about public speaking. Then the transactional model of communication is introduced along with the fundamental components of the communication process. Next, readers will learn about different types of speeches and the occasions for which they would be presented. The chapter ends with an overview of eleven primary public speaking competencies.

    • 1.1: Introduction
      The good news about public speaking is that although it may not be on the top of the list of our favorite activities, anyone can learn to give effective presentations. You don’t have to look like a Hollywood star and you don’t have to use fancy words to be a successful speaker. What is important is that the audience understands you and remembers what you have to say.
    • 1.2: Benefits of Public Speaking
      Public speaking is universally applicable to all types of majors and occupations and is seen by U.S. employers as a critical employability skill for job seekers (Rockler-Gladen, 2009; U.S. Department of Labor, 2000). No matter what your ambitions and interests are, developing speaking skills will benefit your personal, professional, and public life.
    • 1.3: Model of Communication
      It should be clear by now that public speaking happens all around us in many segments of our lives. However, to truly understand what is happening within these presentations, we need to take a step back and look at some of the key components of the communication process.
    • 1.4: Elements of the Communication Process
    • 1.5: Types of Speeches and Speaking Occasions
    • 1.6: Speaking Competencies
    • 1.7: Review Questions
    • 1.8: Glossary

    This page titled 1: Introduction to Public Speaking is shared under a CC BY-NC-ND 3.0 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Lisa Schreiber and Morgan Hartranft (Public Speaking Project) via source content that was edited to the style and standards of the LibreTexts platform; a detailed edit history is available upon request.