COM 101: Speech Communication

Course Description

This course will focus on intrapersonal, interpersonal, and public speaking. Students will acquire theory and develop skills in gender communication, workplace communication, interviewing, informative speaking and persuasive speaking. (3 credits)


  • None

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  1. Identify and explain the function of the communication elements: source, message, channel, code, receiver, noise, feedback, and situation.
  2. Define perception and explain how it relates to the communication process.
  3. Explain obstacles to verbal communication.
  4. Implement a plan to monitor and overcome communication apprehension.
  5. Identify forms of nonverbal behaviors and cues.
  6. Identify the ways to improve listening and explain how each method can help develop better listening habits.
  7. Explain how to increase the effectiveness of feedback based on encoding and decoding messages through various channels.
  8. Define and supply examples of open, closed, mirror, and probing interview questions.
  9. Develop an organization for an information-gathering interview.
  10. Identify the overall intent of speaking through analysis of the communication context and setting.
  11. Construct a speech which illustrates the specific purpose and identifies the desired audience response.
  12. Generate an outline which clearly differentiates the speech introduction, body and outline components.
  13. Explain and apply the various methods of supporting main points: analogy, contrast, explanation, factual illustration, hypothetical illustration, and series of specific instances, restatement, statistics, and testimony.
  14. Present and execute a well-researched and rehearsed extemporaneous speech key word outline.
  15. Analyze one's audience to address specific needs and expectations.
  16. Research support material to support a thesis statement.

Course Activities and Grading


Orientation Assignment


Threaded Discussions




Introductory Quote Speech


Interview Assignments


Informative Speech


Persuasive Speech




Required Textbooks

Available through Charter Oak State College's online bookstore

  • Verderber, Kathleen S. Communicate! - with MindTap. 15th ed. Cengage Learning Publishing, 2017. ISBN-13: 978-1-337-06208-4 [Looseleaf version]


Additional Resources (Required)

  • Webcam with a microphone OR
  • Smartphone with recording capabilities (students who choose to record their speeches will upload them to YouTube)

Course Schedule



Readings and Exercises




Topic: Introduction to Human Communication

  • Readings and Videos:
    • Chapter 1: Foundations of Communication
    • View “Burning Leaves" in MindTap
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Participate in the Orientation discussion
  • Participate in the chapter 1 discussion
  • Take chapter 1 quiz



Topic: Speech Organization

  • Readings and Videos:
    • Chapter 12: Organizing your speech
    • View “Speech of Self Introduction by Tiffany” in MindTap
  • Sign up for speech presentation slot
  • Test webcam/download video conferencing software
  • Complete Introductory Quotation Speech Preparation and Outline



Topics: Speech Delivery and Communication Anxiety

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 15: Delivery
    • How can you reduce public speaking fear?’ in Lecture section
  • Read assigned chapter and lecture
  • Complete Public Speaking Fear Assessment in MindTap (not graded)
  • Present Introductory Quotation speech and upload link
  • Complete Intro Quotation speech self-analysis



Topic: Verbal Communication

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 4: Verbal
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Take the chapter 4 quiz



Topic: Nonverbal Communication

  • Readings and Videos:
    • Chapter 5: Nonverbal communication
    • View “The Audience Speaks” in MindTap


  • Participate in the discussion
  • Take the chapter 5 quiz



Topic: Listening

  • Readings and Videos:
    • Chapter 6: Listening
    • View “Damien and Chris” in MindTap
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Participate in the discussion
  • Take the chapter 6 quiz
  • Review interview assignment
  • Set up interview



Topic: Interviewing

  • Readings:
    • Appendix A: Interviewing
    • Figure 11.5 Sample Survey Questions (pp 220)
  • Read assigned chapters
  • Complete Interview Assignment Part I: Questions
  • Conduct interview



Topic: Selection and Development

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 11: Topic Selection
  • Complete Interview Report
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Complete Informative Speech Audience Analysis and Preparation



Topic: Informative Speaking

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 16: Informative Speaking
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Take the chapter 16 quiz
  • Complete Informative Speech Key Phrase Outline and Oral Footnotes



Topic: Informative Speaking, continued

  • Videos:
    • View MindTap video “Understanding Hurricanes”
  • Present Informative Speech and upload link
  • Complete Informative Speech Self-Analysis



Topic: Language

  • Readings and Videos:
    • Chapter 14: Language
    • View video “Ice Cream Assassin by Zadie” in MindTap
  • Read the assigned chapter
  • Take the chapter 14 quiz
  • Participate in the discussion



Topic: Intercultural Communication

  • Readings and Videos:
    • Chapter 3: Intercultural Communication
    • View linked video “New Employee”
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Take the chapter 3 quiz



Topic: Persuasive Speaking

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 17: Persuasive Speaking


  • Read assigned chapter
  • Take the chapter 17 quiz
  • Complete Persuasive Speech Audience Analysis
  • Complete Persuasive Speech Preparation



Topics: Persuasive Speaking, Continued and Presentational Aids

  • Readings and Videos:
    • Chapter 13: Presentational Aids
    • View MindTap video “Together We Can Stop Cyberbullying”
  • Complete Key Phrase Outline
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Take the chapter 13 quiz
  • Complete Persuasive Speech Oral Footnotes
  • Complete presentation aid for inclusion in persuasive speech



Topics: Persuasion and Perception

  • Readings:
    • Chapter 2: Perception of Self and Others
  • Read assigned chapter
  • Present Persuasive Speech and upload link
  • Complete Persuasive Speech Self-Analysis
  • Take the chapter 2 quiz
  • Complete Course Evaluation

COSC Accessibility Statement

Charter Oak State College encourages students with disabilities, including non-visible disabilities such as chronic diseases, learning disabilities, head injury, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, or psychiatric disabilities, to discuss appropriate accommodations with the Office of Accessibility Services at

COSC Policies, Course Policies, Academic Support Services and Resources

Students are responsible for knowing all Charter Oak State College (COSC) institutional policies, course-specific policies, procedures, and available academic support services and resources. Please see COSC Policies for COSC institutional policies, and see also specific policies related to this course. See COSC Resources for information regarding available academic support services and resources.