14 Read: Unit 2, Informative Speaking, Related Reading Materials

 Read  Unit 2 Assigned Chapters (5, 7, 15)

creative commons photo @ pexels.com

This page organizes the related chapter readings for Unit 2:  Informative Speaking. You can find chapter links, summaries of the chapters, chapter outlines, key study guide questions/terms,  and links the textbook suggested resources as well as additional materials. Remember to also look to the online textbook’s glossary, activities, and terms in a bold or italic font as you prepare for class discussion, homework, and quizzes.

Associated Chapter Readings

  • Chapter 5 
  • Chapter  7  
  • Chapter 15

Audience Analysis

Chapter 5 Summary

Even the youngest child likes to ask, “Who am I?” and “Who are you?” Photo from pexel.com.

A wise professor, Dr. Charles Tucker,  began each of his Northern Illinois University classes with the questions, “Who am I, who are you, and what are we doing here together!?”  These questions, he argued, apply to any communication situation. “Think of it,” he’d state, “whether it is a couple married 30 years who wake up one day asking this question(interpersonal communication), a commercial for a soda (mass communication), your role in student club (small group communication) or when you begin your speech in the classroom (public speaking), these three questions need to be addressed.” A large part of what Dr. Tucker’s three communication questions entailed, in public speaking terms, “audience analysis.” Chapter 5 assists you in learning what audience analysis is, methods to do so, and how to best use the results.


The chapter’s authors,  DeCaro. Adams, &  Jefferis (2012) state:

Imagine the audience supporting you! Photo from pexel.com.

In contemporary public speaking, the audience that you are addressing is the entire reason you are giving the speech; accordingly, the audience is, therefore, the most important component of all speechmaking. It cannot be said often or more forcefully enough: know your audience! Knowing your audience— their beliefs, attitudes, age, education level, job functions, language, and culture—is the single most important aspect of developing your speech strategy and execution plan. Your audience isn’t just a passive group of people who come together by happenstance to listen to you. Your audience is assembled for a very real and significant reason: they want to hear what you have to say [again, still, the focus is not you, per se, but your MESSAGE, what you have to say]. So, be prepared (p.5-1).


As you prepare your speeches, this chapter will assist you in your analysis whether your instructor assigns a formal audience analysis survey/report or you do so for your own speeches’ benefit.

Chapter 5 Outline

These are the key areas outlined by the Chapter 5 author, Peter DeCaro, Ph.D. (2011) and quoted below:

  • Approaches to Audience Analysis
    o Direct Observation
    o Inference
    o Sampling
  •  Categories of Audience Analysis
    o Situational Analysis
    o Demographic Analysis
    o Psychological Analysis
    o Multicultural Analysis
    o Interest and Knowledge Analysis
    (p. 5-1).

Chapter 5  Study Guide and Review Terms

These are primary areas to focus your study upon, identified by the Chapter 5 author, Peter DeCaro, Ph.D. (2011) and quoted below:

List techniques for analyzing a specific target audience.
Explain audience analysis by direct observation.
Describe audience analysis by inference.
Identify the purpose of a basic questionnaire.
Recognize and apply data sampling.
Determine when to use a Likert-type test.
Define the five categories of audience analysis.
Summarize the purpose of the situational analysis.
Explain audience analysis by demography.
Recognize the difference between beliefs, attitudes and values.
Identify reasons for sampling a multicultural audience.
Apply the chapter concepts in final questions and activities.

(p. 5-1)

Related Online Chapter 5 Resources from The Public Speaking Project.org

Chapter 5 Videos & PowerPoints from the Textbook

The textbook offers professionally narrated PowerPoint presentations on their YouTube Channel: (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmICWAfi4k_-OpZeJf69qiQ )

Additional Chapter 5 Online Related Materials

  • Thomas Damp’s Tutorial on Outlines using the PublicSpeakingProject: 


Basic questions can support your research.  Creative Commons photo by pexel.com.

Supporting your Ideas

Chapter 7 Summary

Supporting materials are collected to lend credence to the ideas, to give a sense of context, background, and authenticity to your speech. Recently in a movie, I saw the main character look to a friend, in the midst of an argument with another friend and say, “Right, you got my back, right? You’ll tell them what I say is true, right?” The idea of supporting your ideas is not just to prove you are “right;” rather they exist to ethically embed a sense of responsible knowledge supporting the main points of your speech. As noted in the chapter, you will use different types of support for different general purposes — flexibility is necessary. Your Celebration Unit speech(es) will generally include narratives, examples and some testimony. Whereas, in an informative speech, more statistics/facts will be used as support along with the narratives, examples, and testimony — and your audience will expect unbiased (or at least a balance of a variety of) supports. A “golden rule” is to consider the variety of ways others process information and if your message helps them to do so in an ethical manner — heart, head, gut, and a proper sense of community. This is the same as the Aristotelian appeals (see his On Rhetoric) of pathos (heart), logos (head), ethos (gut), mythos (sense of community). Each of us reason with some form of all four of these appeals, in an audience you have a group of individuals who vary with their emphasis on these areas. Therefore, the golden rule is to use: 1 fact to appeal to logos or their “heads;” 1 story/narrative/example to soften it up a bit to gain “pathos” and appeal to their hearts; 1 piece of testimony to give the idea a sense of credibility or “ethos” – appealing to the gut; finally, a means to adapt the message so it appeals to the notion of a shared community or mythos.


www.twenty20.com royalty free photo

Aristotle was the first rhetorician/political philosopher  to realize that “communication is morally neutral, that is, it could be used for either good or ill” (George A. Kennedy, Aristotle: A Theory of Civic Discourse and a translation of On Rhetoric, New York, Oxford University Press, 1991, p. ix). In Aristotle’s view, especially in persuasive speeches (where logos, pathos, ethos, and mythos are all important to argue persuasively), in truth, with all addresses of a public nature, it is imperative to understand the minds of the listeners and how they work, which yields, both knowledge of the process by which we become who we are ourselves, and, importantly, it yields, nay demands, that the message is clear, morally grounded, and adheres to the primary points of the speech (1991). And, again, Dr. Tucker’s three questions are relevant here.




Now, as you read Chapter 7, think about how you can employ the “golden rule” of support materials. The chapter’s author, Sarah Stone Watt, Ph.D., (2012) shares, “This chapter will help you research your speech by combining personal and professional knowledge, library resources, and Internet searches. It will help you to evaluate the sources you find and cite them to avoid plagiarism (p. 7-1). Most importantly, though, the golden rule, outlined in Aristotle’s second book of his Rhetoric, will allow for, as Martin Heidegger stated, a “systematic hermeneutic of the everydayness of being with one another” in community; after all, as Aristotle famously wrote in his Politics, humans are by nature “political animals” and develop best in community.

Chapter 7 Outline

These are the key areas outlined by The Public Speaking Project.Org’s  Chapter 7 author, Sarah Stone Watt, Ph.D.:

  • Personal and Professional Knowledge: Personal Testimony; Interviews
  • Library Resources: Books; Periodicals; Full Text Databases
  • Internet Resources:  Search Engines; Defining Search Terms; Websites; Government Documents; Evaluating Information
  •  Citing Sources and Avoiding: Plagiarism; Style Sheets
    (2011, p. 7-1)
Review – even if you think you know it!                                 Creative Commons photo from pexel.com.

Chapter 7 Study Guide and Review Terms

Chapter 7 Online Practice Quiz: https://quizlet.com/227975908/public-speaking-project-7-flash-cards/

These are the objectives to study listed by The Public Speaking Project.Org’s  Chapter 7 author, Sarah Stone Watt, Ph.D. :

  • Combine multiple forms of evidence to support your ideas.
  • Differentiate between the three types of testimony, and know when to use each one.
  • Navigate the library holdings and distinguish between the types of information found in each section.
  • Evaluate source credibility and appropriateness for your speech.
  • Explain plagiarism and implement strategies to avoid it.
    (p. 7-1)

Also, see the Chapter Glossary on page 7-16 for a comprehensive vocabulary list.

Related Online Chapter 7 Resources from The Public Speaking Project.org

Chapter 7 Videos & PowerPoints from the Textbook

The textbook offers professionally narrated PowerPoint presentations on their YouTube Channel: (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmICWAfi4k_-OpZeJf69qiQ )




Additional Chapter 7 Online Related Materials


Informative Speaking

Your instructor should be an “informative” speaker, not a persuasive one….but hopefully an “entertaining” one.    Creative Commons photo from pexel.com.

Chapter 15 Summary

The chapter covers a wide variety of resources for your success as a public speaker. As you read the Chapter, please remember your instructor and peers are here for you and to assist you in creating a college-level informative speech of which you will, rightly, be proud. As for assistance, seek out feedback and practice. This chapter pulls in ideas from previous chapters, it is also helpful to go back and review that information as you find it relevant to writing your informative speech.

Chapter 15 Outline

These are the key areas outlined by The Public Speaking Project.Org’s  author (Schreiber, 2011)

  • Functions of Informative Speeches: Provide Knowledge; Shape Perceptions,  Articulate Alternatives; Allow us to Survive and Evolve
  • Role of Speaker: Informative Speakers are Objective;  Informative Speakers are Credible; Informative Speakers Make the Topic Relevant; Informative Speakers are Knowledgeable
  • Types of Informative Speeches: Definitional Speeches; Descriptive Speeches; Explanatory Speeches; Demonstration Speeches
  • Developing Informative Speeches:  Generate and Maintain Interest; Create Coherence; Make Speech Memorable
    (p. 15-1)
Hang in there! Creative Commons photo from pexel.com.

Chapter 15  Study Guide and Review Terms

  • How do individuals use informative speaking in their everyday lives?
  • What distinguishes an informative speech from a persuasive speech?
  • How can an informative speaker, “shape our perceptions?”
  • What does the author mean by, “ informative presentations enhance our ability to survive and evolve.”
  • Define “objective.” How does the role of the informative speaker differ from the persuasive speaker?
  • What is the general purpose associated with an informative speech?
  • How can a topic become relevant to an audience?
  • What are the different types of informative speeches?
  • Explain how you can boost your credibility in an informative speech.
  • Explain the acronym, “WIIFM” and why it is important to the adaptation of a message.
  • How can you generate and create interest with attention getters, novelty, contrast, activity, humor?
  • What is recommended for organizing an informative speech?
  • What is information overload? How can you prevent it?
  • Explain the VARK method of learning.

Also see the Chapter Glossary on page 15-15 for a comprehensive vocabulary list.

Related Online Chapter 15 Resources from The Public Speaking Project.org

Chapter 15 Videos & PowerPoints from the Textbook

The textbook offers professionally narrated PowerPoint presentations on their YouTube Channel: (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmICWAfi4k_-OpZeJf69qiQ )


Additional Chapter 15 Online Related Materials



Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

The Public Speaking Resource Project by Lori Halverson-Wente and Mark Halverson-Wente is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book