Monday, September 10, 2012

Courses that Improve People

By Sean Scarpiello

Last spring as I was choosing classes for the fall semester, a few of my academic advisors had looked over my schedule and pointed out what seemed to be a problem. All of the science classes looked normal, but then I had a miscellaneous class—public speaking. Each of my advisors had pulled me aside and asked why I wanted to take this public speaking class. The class would not fulfill any requirement courses or count towards my major in any way. When all of my advisors asked me why I wanted to take it, I simply described how I want to improve my public speaking skills.

As the class is entitled “Principles of Public Speaking,” it is often taken by freshmen or seniors as a class that will yield a high grade without much work. However, within the first week, the professor had everyone standing up in front of the class giving speeches. The class is not at all what we had expected, in regards to both the course load and to the general setup of the class. Many of the students taking the class figured that they would only be learning about the principles of public speaking, not applying them in weekly speeches. Also there is much more to the class than just speaking. The professor has already gone over the proper way to make an argument in a persuasive speech as well as the psychology of a public speaker. By learning about what is exactly going on in our heads, we are learning to avoid our nervous tendencies and stiffened postures.

One other element of the class that no one had predicted was the classroom. We are performing speeches in a full theatre. Everyone figured that we would be in a classroom with twenty desks performing in front of a small class. Learning to give speeches in a theatre takes the learning process to another level. It also allows us to be more relaxed in the future when giving speeches. After practicing in a huge theater in front of an entire college class, speaking to a smaller group will be no problem.

One of the points I am trying to make is that although a class may at first seem useless from a curriculum view, students are in school to learn. Taking a public speaking class is a whole new form of learning where students can take what they are leaning in class and use it in the real world instantly. In reality, the majority of the things we learn in school are not seen again unless we specialize in the field. Unless you are an architect or engineer, there is a good chance that you will not put to use the physics and algebra that you learned from high school and college. This public speaking class is great because everyone will be in a situation in their life when they need to speak publicly. We may find ourselves in this situation in a conference or presentation at work or even at a friend’s wedding. Everyone could probably benefit from a public speaking course not because it is something that will better your career, but because it will better yourself.

1 comment:

Sasika said...

This is a awesome article.If you can write a article about women rights
It will be more awesome