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Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Designing and presenting a speech is a solitary task. By definition, public speaking involves one person speaking to a group, which sets it apart from other types of communication situations, such as interpersonal and small group communication. Due to the inherently individualistic nature of assignments in the basic course, students rarely profit from the pedagogical advantages of working with peers. Increased motivation through "mutual support and stimulation" as well as increased learning and improved retention of material are three benefits of collaborative work that can be useful to students learning the basics of public speaking. This activity provides students with these three benefits by temporarily eliminating the solitary nature of public speaking and allowing them to engage in impromptu preparations and presentations of speech introductions and conclusions as members of a small group. This activity focuses on speech introductions and conclusions due to their strategic importance to the process of designing and delivering a successful speech. Because students must "do some thinking about the general topic" to develop an introduction and conclusion, practicing these two parts of a speech provides students with the experience to develop the structural framework for their entire speech. A list of references and suggested readings is included.