Types of informative speeches analysis and organization
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Types of Informative Speeches: Analysis and Organization. Barry 2010. Importance of Informative Speaking. Survey of graduates from 5 U.S. colleges: Respondents asked to rank the speech skills most important to their jobs: Informative speaking was rated number one. Another survey:

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Types of Informative Speeches: Analysis and Organization

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Types of informative speeches analysis and organization

Types of Informative Speeches: Analysis and Organization

Barry 2010


Importance of informative speaking

Importance of Informative Speaking

  • Survey of graduates from 5 U.S. colleges:

  • Respondents asked to rank the speech skills most important to their jobs:

    • Informative speaking was rated number one.

  • Another survey:

    • 62 percent of respondents said they used informative speaking “almost constantly” in their job

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Purpose of informative speaking

Purpose of Informative Speaking

  • To convey knowledge and understanding

  • Not to advocate a cause or persuade

  • In good informative speeches,

    • Information is communicated accurately

    • Information is communicated clearly

    • Information is made meaningful and interesting to the audience

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Four types of informative speeches

Four Types of Informative Speeches

  • The four types of informative speeches are

    • Speeches about objects

    • Speeches about processes

    • Speeches about events

    • Speeches about concepts

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about objects

Speeches about Objects

  • “Objects” include anything that is visible, tangible, and stable in form.

  • Could include places, structures, animals, and even people.

  • Examples:

  • the Grand Canyon

  • the human eye

  • seaweed

  • comic strips

  • stock market

  • Ella Fitzgerald

  • GPS navigation devices

  • U.S. Army

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about objects1

Speeches about Objects

  • Of course, you must choose a specific purpose centered on one aspect of a subject.

  • Good specific purpose statements:

    • To inform my audience about the geological features of the Grand Canyon

    • To inform my audience about the role of Ella Fitzgerald in establishing the American jazz aesthetic

    • To inform my audience what to look for when buying a GPS navigation device

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about objects2

Speeches about Objects

  • Too broad:

    • To inform my audience about Pablo Picasso

  • Sufficiently narrow

    • To inform my audience about the major contributions of Pablo Picasso to modern art

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Example speech about objects

Example Speech about Objects

Specific Purpose: To inform my audience about the major achievements of Frederick Douglass

Central Idea: Although born in slavery, Frederick Douglass became one of the greatest figures in American history.

Main Points: I. Douglass spent the first 20 years of his life as a slave in Maryland.

II. After escaping to the North, Douglass became a leader in the abolitionist movement to end slavery.

III. During the Civil War, Douglass helped establish black regiments in the Union Army.

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Example speech about objects1

Example Speech about Objects

Specific Purpose: To inform my audience about the four major elements of a Japanese garden

Central Idea: The four major elements of a Japanese garden are stones, sand, water, and plants.

Main Points: I. The first element of a Japanese garden is stones, which symbolize mountains and islands.

II. The second element of a Japanese garden is sand, which symbolizes the sea or other vast areas.

III. The third element of a Japanese garden is water, which symbolizes purity and life.

IV. The fourth element of a Japanese garden is plants, which symbolize life and the changing seasons.

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about processes

Speeches about Processes

  • Explain how something is made, how something is done, or how something works.

  • Good specific purpose statements:

    • To inform my audience how hurricanes develop

    • To inform my audience how to write an effective job resume

    • To inform my audience how to choose a study-abroad program

    • To inform my audience how U.S. currency is made

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about processes1

Speeches about Processes

  • There are two kinds of informative speeches about processes:

  • 1. Goal of understanding

  • 2. Goal of performing

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Example speech about processes

Example Speech about Processes

Specific Purpose: To inform my audience about the major rituals of a traditional Bengali wedding in India.

Central Idea: A traditional Bengali wedding consists of a series of rituals that take place before, during, and after the wedding ceremony.

Main Points: I. Pre-wedding rituals include giving gifts to the bride and groom and dressing the bride in traditional fashion.

II. Rituals during the wedding ceremony include an exchange of garlands between the bride and groom, the chanting of mantras, and the giving away of the bride by her uncle.

III. Post-wedding rituals include a celebration at the home of the bride’s family, a reception at the home of the groom’s family, and the formal exit of the bride and groom.

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about events

Speeches about Events

  • Events refer to “anything that happens or is regarded as happening.”

  • Examples of subjects for speeches about events:

  • mountain climbing

  • job interviews

  • tsunamis

  • Battle of Little Big Horn

  • the Holocaust

  • the civil rights movement

  • Cinco de Mayo

  • attention deficit disorder

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about events1

Speeches about Events

  • Good specific purpose statements:

    • To inform my audience of the festivities at Mexico’s Cinco de Mayo celebration

    • To inform my audience about the major events of the Battle of Little Big Horn

    • To inform my audience about the major types of therapeutic massage

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Example speech about an event

Example Speech about an Event

Specific Purpose: To inform my audience about the history of the Paralympics

Central Idea: Olympic-style games for athletes with physical disabilities have made great strides since the first competition more than 60 years ago.

Main Points: I. What would eventually become the Paralympics began in 1948 with a sports competition in Great Britain involving World War II veterans with spinal cord injuries.

II. In 1952 the event expanded when athletes from the Netherlands took part.

III. The first official Paralympic Games for international athletes took place in Rome in 1960.

IV. In 2001 an agreement was signed officially holding the Paralympic Games alongside the summer and winter Olympic Games.

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about concepts

Speeches about Concepts

  • Beliefs, theories, ideas, principles

  • More abstract than objects, processes, or events

  • Examples of subjects for speeches about concepts:

  • Confucianism

  • philosophies of education

  • human rights

  • string theory

  • principles of feminism

  • nonviolent resistance

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about concepts1

Speeches about Concepts

  • Examples of sufficiently narrow purpose statements:

    • To inform my audience about the basic principles of Confucianism

    • To inform my audience about the doctrine of original intent in constitutional interpretation.

    • To inform my audience about the difference between philosophies of education in Europe and the United States

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Example speech about a concept

Example Speech about a Concept

Specific Purpose: To inform my audience about the basic principles of nonviolent resistance

Central Idea: The basic principles of nonviolent resistance stress using moral means to achieve social change, refusing to inflict violence on one’s enemies, and using suffering as a social force.

Main Points: I. The first major principle of nonviolent resistance is that social change must be achieved by moral means.

II. The second major of nonviolent resistance is that one should not inflict violence on one’s enemies.

III. The third major principle of nonviolent resistance is that suffering can be a powerful social force.

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Speeches about concepts2

Speeches about Concepts

  • Speeches about concepts are often more complex and difficult to understand.

  • If you speak about a concept, avoid technical language unless you define terms.

  • Also, use examples and comparisons to illustrate the concepts.

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Flexibility of categories

Flexibility of Categories

  • Some subjects could fit into more than one category, depending on how you develop the speech.

  • Decide how you want to handle your subject, and go from there.

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


Brainstorm assignment

Brainstorm Assignment

  • If it is helpful, you can use these more limited categories to brainstorm ideas for speeches:

    • People

    • Places

    • Things

    • Cultural traditions

    • How-to speeches

    • Natural phenomena

    • Religious beliefs or practices

    • Political beliefs or practices

    • Problems

From The Art of Public Speaking by Stephen E. Lucas


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