Public Speaking

This course is a response to students’ need for mastering the techniques of public speaking and persuasion, in both oral and written formats, with a strong emphasis on the elements of oral presentation (e.g. tone of voice, body language, playing to an audience, rhetorical strategies, etc.) and opportunities for the application and practice of what they learn. Students will engage in classical debate, study logical reasoning and fallacies, be inspired by critical analyses of famous historical speeches, media, and politics, and prepare for both post-secondary education and myriad careers which require excellent people-skills.

Students will learn about:

  • Presentation skills and public speaking
  • Interview skills mastery
  • Logic and the art of argument
  • Negotiation strategies
  • Famous speeches and historical analysis
  • Classical and contemporary debate – history, philosophy, and practical applications
  • Journalism, news, radio/broadcasting and media studies
  • Rhetoric, logic and logical fallacies, discourse analysis and linguistics
  • Language and the law
  • Language and politics
  • Speechwriting, Figures of Speech, and Voice Coaching
  • Laws of Persuasive Power
  • Philosophies of Great Thinkers
  • Ethics and Social Justice – being persuasive and changing the world!
Practical components will include opportunities to:

  • Participate in real studio broadcasting
  • Attend formal public city debates
  • Take part in CBC audience debates and radio shows (e.g. The Debaters, Stuart McLean)
  • Professionally record student-written speeches at a recording studio (professional voice coaching included)
  • Attend other field trips related to class learning
  • Present newly honed debating/presentation skills at various open-houses.
Guest speakers will also provide valuable knowledge (e.g. lawyers, performance poets).

Classes will be held once a week for two hours.

Public Speaking — Part Two

For graduates of Public Speaking, this course is focused on out-of-class opportunities for students to practice persuasion skills and learn from professionals in the art.

In this course, our meetings are both instructional and experiential (some will be two hours in length, some all-day long); these will include an array of speaking competitions that are local, provincial, and national! Start flexing your speech-writing and public speaking muscles!

Experiences We’ve Had in Public Speaking – Part 2:

  • The Debaters – CBC Radio show
  • National Public Speaking Competition: Royal Winter Fair (Canadian Young Speakers for Agriculture – CYSA)
  • This Is That – CBC Radio show
  • Speakers Idol – Provincial public speaking competition
  • University of Toronto Debate Team
  • An Evening with Ira Glass – Massey Hall
  • Guest speakers and coaches @ Brain Power
  • …and so much more!


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