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16.4: Glossary, References

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    Central Idea
    A one-sentence encapsulation of the main points of a speech, also called the thesis.
    Chronological Speech
    A speech in which the main points are delivered according to when they happened and could be traced on a calendar or clock.
    Comparative Speech
    A speech in which two or more objects, ideas, beliefs, events, places, or things are compared or contrasted with one another.
    Causal Speech
    A speech that informs audience members about causes and effects that have already happened.
    General Purpose Statement
    The overarching goal of a speech; for instance, to inform, to persuade, to inspire, to celebrate, to mourn, or to entertain.
    Internal Summaries and Previews
    Short descriptions of what a speaker has said and what will be said between main points.
    Main Points
    The key pieces of information or arguments contained within a talk or presentation.
    Organizational Styles
    Templates for organizing the main points of a speech that are rooted in the traditions of public discourse and can jumpstart the speechwriting process.
    Hierarchical textual arrangement of all the various elements of a speech.
    Parallel Structure
    Main points that are worded using the same structure.
    Preparation Outline
    A full-sentence outline that is used during the planning stages to flesh out ideas, arrange main points, and to rehearse the speech; could be used as a script if presenting a manuscript style speech.
    Preview Statement
    The road map that you provide the audience of the main points you will cover during your speech. The sentences that detail what your main points will be (e.g. First, I will describe…, Second, I will explain…. Finally, I will let you know…)
    Refutation Speech
    A speech that anticipates the audience’s opposition, then brings attention to the tensions between the two sides, and finally refutes them using evidential support.
    Words and gestures that allow you to move smoothly from one idea to the next throughout your speech, showing relationships between ideas and emphasizing important points” (Beebe & Beebe, 2003).
    Spatial Speech
    A speech in which the main points are arranged according to their physical and geographic relationships.
    Speaking Outline
    A succinct outline that uses words or short phrases to represent the components of a speech and that is used during speech delivery.
    Specific Purpose Statement
    A sentence or two that describe precisely what the speech is intended to do.
    Information that is used to support the main points of a speech.
    Short recaps of what has already been said; used to remind the audience of the points already addressed.
    Thesis Statement
    A one-sentence encapsulation of the main points of a speech, also called the central idea.
    Topical Speech
    A speech in which main points are developed separately and are generally connected together within the introduction and conclusion.
    Transitional Statements
    Phrases or sentences that lead from one distinct-but-connected idea to another.


    • Beebe, S. A. & Beebe, S. J. (2003). The public speaking handbook (5th edition). Boston: Pearson.
    • Lucas, Stephen E. (2004). The art of public speaking (8th edition). New York: McGraw- Hill.
    • Monroe, A. H. (1949). Principles and types of speech. Glenview, IL: Scott, Foresman and Company.
    • Mudd, C. S. & Sillar, M.O. (1962), Speech; content and communication. San Francisco, CA: Chandler Publishing Company.
    • O’Hair, D., Stewart, R., Rubenstein, H. (2004). A speaker’s guidebook: Text and reference (2nd edition). Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s.
    • Zarefsky, D. (2010). Public speaking: Strategies for success (6th edition). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

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    16.4: Glossary, References is shared under a CC BY license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by LibreTexts.

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