Exemplary: Organizational pattern (specific introduction and conclusion, sequenced material within the body, and transitions) is clearly and consistently observable is skillful, and makes the content of the presentation cohesive.
1. Repetition is Good!
One important difference between oral and written communication is the sensory and temporal role of audience. They hear the message (typically with only one opportunity to hear, understand, and retain it), as opposed to reading it (typically with opportunities to re-read and concentrate on the message). This limited exposure to the message makes the clarity of organization very important. Students should think about the rule of 3s. In the introduction, tell them what you are going to tell them. In the body, make each main point obvious through the use of clear transitional language. In the conclusion, reiterate what you told them.
2. Full Content Outline
While there is some debate over the value of outlining in writing, it is an excellent tool for speakers when constructing the content of their speeches. A full-content outline is one that uses complete sentences, breaks down each organizational dimension of the speech, and includes any visual aids or support materials. While writing the speech may be the default step for many students, reading from a manuscript risks delivery problems. A full-content outline forces the student to practice in order to provide explanations not written down, while also giving them the comfort of a speech blueprint to keep them on-track during practicing and performance.
The outline helps speakers in several ways:
· It shows the development of main points.
· It shows the relative balance or imbalance of development of each main point.
· It shows the frequency and variety of use of support material.
· It facilitates a quick review of each main point to ensure its relationship with the thesis.
A sample is provided that illustrates the basics of a full-content outline, but is also in need of revision. Critiquing the sample would be an excellent in-class exercise.
3. Separate the Pieces
Introductions and conclusions are important in any communication. That being said, highlighting the specific elements of an introduction and conclusion within a speech is critically important. It helps to ensure all the unique requirements of each part of the speech are fulfilled. It is a good idea to have students write, and perhaps even present, introductions and conclusions independent of one another, and without the body of the speech. This places more emphasis on just the introduction and conclusion.
A breakdown of organizational requirements, including what should be in an introduction and conclusion, is provided.