Course Summary
Credit Type:
Organization's ID:
14 weeks (75 hours)
Dates Offered:
Credit Recommendation & Competencies
Level Credits (SH) Subject
Lower-Division Baccalaureate 3 Communications


The course objective is to encourage students to consider how engaging in public discourse can serve as a purposeful, action-driven form of communication. In this course, students will gain foundational knowledge of communication, as influenced by constitutive, contextual, and cultural factors, and then apply this knowledge through a series of public speaking projects centered around advocacy and argument. Students will design preparatory, informative, persuasive, research and reflective projects, engaging in civic discourse as a process of advocacy including consideration of the following: organizational structure, context, content, modality, language, aesthetic and rhetorical choices, statements of connectivity, and desired outcomes. In addition, students will learn how to appropriately select, analyze and synthesize credible source material, with the ultimate goal of combining researched evidence with their own unique insights. Finally, students will engage in ethical and effective research techniques, using the Modern Language Association’s (MLA-Version 8 or 9) formatting recommendations.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand what it means to “be an advocate,” and to participate in civic discourse
  • Engage in information discovery, analysis, and application by searching for, and synthesizing, relevant sources for advocacy-driven public speaking projects
  • Apply deep critical thinking skills to guide broad topic exploration and the formation of specific arguments guided by focused thesis statements
  • Deploy rhetorical techniques such as elocution, style, verbal/nonverbal delivery and visual aids, to enhance audience engagement
  • Integrate knowledge of rhetorical strategies when crafting an argument
  • Design multimodal communication presentations that align with project purpose, intended audience, and desired outcome
  • Create coherent preparation and speaking outlines that demonstrate awareness of strong organizational strategies and employ the scaffolding required for successful communication centered around a clear purpose
  • Demonstrate an ability to analyze civic discourse as an audience member
  • Critically consider how one’s values, assumptions, actions, and communication affect a desired outcome
  • Create effective introductory, informational and persuasive proposition projects with the following considerations: engaging opening, well-articulated thesis, argument structure, substantive conclusion, relevant and integrated source material, effective transitions, and appropriate verbal and nonverbal cues
  • Reflect on individual strengths and opportunities for growth, as applicable to communication situations and opportunities

General Topics:

  • Course Introduction and Welcome
  • Public Speaking as Advocacy
  • Centering Audiences
  • Selecting and Formulating Arguments
  • Researching Arguments
  • Crafting Arguments
  • Organizing and Outlining
  • Aesthetics and Delivery
  • Presentation Aids
  • Rehearsing your Presentation
  • Informative Advocacy
  • Persuasive Advocacy
  • Online Public Speaking
Instruction & Assessment

Instructional Strategies:

  • Audio Visual Materials
  • Computer Based Training
  • Learner Presentations

Methods of Assessment:

  • Performance Rubrics (Checklists)
  • Presentations
  • Quizzes
  • Written Papers

Minimum Passing Score:

Supplemental Materials

Other offerings from StraighterLine