Oral Communication

Effective oral communication is required for success in the educational setting and is critical for success in the business world. Menial low-skill jobs are limited in number and will probably continue to decrease as more and more tasks become computerized. Employers expect employees to continuously build on skills that involve critical thinking, solving problems, communicating ideas to others, and collaborating effectively. A key skill in literacy learning is narrative language – listening, understanding, giving meaning to thoughts, and sharing them with an audience. The Standards for the English Language Arts specify that students must be able to adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language (e.g., conventions, style, and vocabulary) to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes. Understanding the interdependence between oral communication and the written language is essential to understanding literacy. Educators suggest that English Language Arts courses must include curricula that can be used for teaching students to successfully learn the different functions of language including narrative, informative, and persuasive speech.

Workshop participants will learn how to present three interactive multimedia programs that focus on giving narrative, informative, and persuasive speeches. The programs are designed to enable students to learn strategies related to the complexities of spoken language at levels required in middle and high school. The strategies are designed to help students listen, identify critical information, and effectively deliver that information to a variety of audiences. These programs serve as a supplement to traditional curricula and instructional methodologies or as a remediation tool for use with students with expressive language deficits. The programs are useable in a variety of settings to provide instruction and practice to ensure that students achieve mastery in communication skills by meeting standards and performance benchmarks for speaking. Settings might include English classes, Language Arts classes, Special Education classes, classes for English language learners, study hall, summer school programs, or after-school programs, for example. The interactive, multimedia (IM) CD format provides self-paced validated instruction to students. Dr. Vernon is the first author of the three programs.

Speaking with Power: Informing Others

Speaking with Power: Persuading Others

Speaking with Power: Narrative Strategy