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Subject Libguide: Speech Communication: Writing a Speech

WRITING A SPEECH

UNDERSTAND YOUR ASSIGNMENT
  • Read your assignment given to you from your instructor.
  • Who is your audience? 
  • What is your purpose? 
  • What is your topic, tone, and style.
  • How long does your speech need to be? 
  • Are you using presentation software such as PowerPoint or other technologies? 
  • Do you need visuals or props? 
  • How many sources do you need?
SELECT AND FOCUS ON YOUR TOPIC: BEGIN YOUR RESEARCH
  • Search for a topic until you find one that interests you:
  • Search for your resources through credible sources
GET ORGANIZED AND OUTLINE YOUR SPEECH
  • An introduction (including purpose and overview)
  • Content or body
  • Conclusion
DRAFT ANY VISUAL AIDS AND GATHER ADDITIONAL RESEARCH
  • Choose supporting evidence to your ideas.
  • Put together your gathered research from credible sources.  Include the source in your speech. This will make your speech more authoritative.
  • Do you need help in locating materials? Use the library databases where there are more credible resources compared to online searches such as google, facebook etc.
  • Create a PowerPoint or visual materials.  Gather images, videos or other media if needed.
  • Create handouts or a bibliography if needed. 
COMPOSE YOUR TALKING POINTS
  • Start with your most important points.
  • What is the  message you want your audience to understand, believe, accept or do after they hear your speech? Write this out in one or two sentences.What evidence supports your message
  • Create moments or thoughts that can get attentions such as humor, unusual facts, images, questions, etc. 
  • Organize  your thoughts as you speak. (Create an outline, use index cards, use visuals, etc.)
PLAN THE TIMING OF YOUR SPEECH
  • Practice and time out your speech.
  • Revise your talking points, PowerPoint slides and transitions.
  • Delete talking points and/or PowerPoint slides that are not crucial. 
REHEARSE YOUR SPEECH FOR CONTENT AND TIMING 
  • Practice your speech
  • Practice your non-verbal ques such as body position, eye movement, hand movement and more.
  •  record yourself   to identify problems, distracting habits, etc. towards improvement
  • Do not read every word of the speech.--Use your speech as talking points or ques.
  • Avoid common verbal habits such as "um", "like", "you know", "kinda", etc.
  • Practice your speech many times until you feel comfortable with the content and timing.
  • Review your assignment to be sure you are meeting all the requirements.
FINAL PREPARATION & PRACTICE

Keep Practicing. Prepare to deliver you speech.

  • Make sure you have all your materials together including note cards, outlines, visuals, handouts, bibliography, PowerPoint on Flash drive, etc.
  • Be aware you may have feelings of anxiety. This is very common and a few strategies may help including:
    1. Arrive early
    2. Practice on the day of your speech so you are comfortable with the content.