Can you give the speech in Interested in a topic isn’t enough. However. You must also be -or become – thoroughly informed about the topic. Why would anyone speak on unfamiliar topic unless required to? Why would an audience listen to someone who didn’t know anything about a topic? Would you listen to a speaker tell you to administer CPRM (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) if he or she never had a CPRM course? Probably not. Remember, the effect you have on the audience is based on the audience’s perception of your expertise, good intentions, trustworthiness. Choose a topic that shows off your best points.
Whether you choose your topic or it’s assigned to you, you must consider audience needs. As you narrow a topic, determine what the audience wants or need to hear, using audience analysis skills from Chapter 8. For classroom speeches, choose topic that you find interesting. Since your classmates know little about. After all, you can almost always make a topic interesting. Along with audience interests, consider the group’s knowledge of the topic. People usually listen to speeches to hear new information, so don’t bore an audience with a speech they’ve heard many times before.
For example, everyone has studied World War II but now many people heard a detailed description of the battle of the Bulge? Even if an audience has general knowledge of your topic, you can narrow it to present new or more detailed information that will be unfamiliar to audience. Suiting the Occasion An occasion is an specific event within the situation. The topic must suit the occasion. If you’re giving a speech to student council, why talk about your favorite sports team? If occasion celebrates Thanksgiving, why talk about your hobbies?
Common sense should help you select a topic that suits the occasion. For help in this process, see Chapter 8. NARROWING A TOPIC f you aren’t sure about how to develop your speech, this list of questions may help narrow your topic: 1. What is it? Define the subject. 2. What examples, of (the subject) are there? (be as specific as possible. ) 3. Of these examples, which are most interesting? Most unusual? Most typical? Most controversial? Why? 4. What are the subject’s part or features? Can the subject be broken down into parts, groups, or other constituents? 5.
Of the parts or features, which most important? Most interesting? Most controversial? Why? 6. How is the subject like other things? A. Figurative similarities? (similes and metaphors) b. Literal similarities? (comparisons and analogies) . How is the subject different from other things in important ways? A. How is it different from items in AAA? B. How is different from items in B c. How is it different from items previously unlisted? 8. What is the nature of the us object? A. It is a process, a series of stages or steps that yield a product? B. Is it the product of a series of stages or steps? . Is it one of a series of stages or steps? 9. What causes the 10. What are the results or consequences of the 11. What have others said about the us object? 12. Does investigation into the subject reveal a need for a change? If so, why is change needed? 13. What changes might solve problems identified in #12? QUALIFIED Ta king driving lessons from a qualified instructor is almost always better than twining to learn from a friend or relative. The first thesis allows no exception, and someone in the audience can always think Of an exception to categorical thesis.
The second one is better, because it allows for reasonable exception. NARROWING YOUR TOPIC One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to fail t narrow a broad general topic. Narrowing a topic is a way to make a topic more manageable. Could someone give a ten minute speech on World War II Or a five minute speech on scuba diving? Narrowing a topic allows you address an aspect of the topic in depth. A general topic doesn’t allow in-depth treatment. Often your common sense will help you narrow your topic.
If you want to speak on monsters and other mysterious creatures, you know you can’t talk about all Of them in five minutes. Common sense tells you to limit this general topic to a narrow one: the Loch News monster Bigot, or the Abominable Snowman. Most common sense narrowing IS based on the type of development used in speech. See the Spotlight on speaking box on page 160. When you select a type of development, you have taken first step toward narrowing. For example, if you decide to compare the Loch News monster to legendary sea serpents, you’ve narrowed the topic.