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Topic

Choose a topic that you are interested in and that your audience might be interested in.

Format

  • This outline must be at least 3 pages long and use 12-point font.
  • Use appropriate coordination and subordination. Use full sentences, including subjects and verbs for the main ideas or main points and the 1st order of subordinate ideas or sub-points. Consistently use either full-sentence or list form for 2nd -order sub-points supporting the same 1st order sub-point. Usually use list form for 3rd order, 4th order, and 5th order sub-points.
  • Enhance the readability of the outline. Use only one idea per point, only one sentence per point, single-space each point, and double-space vertically between points. Leave a line of white space between each point at every level.
  • Transitions between major sections and the main points should be provided in the outline (enclosed in parentheses). Use transitions to move the audience’s attention from one section to another or from one main point to another.
  • Use a consistent pattern of indentation. Type main points flush with the left margin. Indent 5 spaces for 1st-order sub-points, 10 spaces for 2nd-order sub-points, 15 spaces for 3rd-order sub-points, 20 spaces for 4th-order sub-points.
  • Use the following system to label the points in the body:
    • Main Points: upper case Roman numerals [I, II, III, IV, V]
    • 1st -order sub-points: upper case letters [A, B, C, D, E]
    • 2nd -order sub-points: Arabic numerals [1, 2.3, 4, 5]
    • 3rd -order sub-points: lower-case letters {a, b, c, d, e],
    • 4th -order sub-points: Arabic numerals in parentheses [(1), (2), (3)]

Content

Specific Purpose: Formulated into one sentence, the specific purpose identifies the precise response the speaker desires from the audience (understand). Do not use infinitive phrases, i.e., “to inform” or “to persuade.” Place the label for the specific purpose sentence flush with the left margin.

Thesis Sentence: The thesis sentence (addressed to the audience, not the instructor) summarizes everything the speaker intends to say during the speech. Place the label for the thesis sentence flush with the left margin.

The introduction should gain attention, orient the audience by stating the topic, offer a reason for listening, and preview the body of the speech. The introduction (which may be outlined or written word-for-word) is designed to

  1. gain the attention of the audience;
  2. establish the speaker’s credibility; and
  3. orient the audience to the body of the speech.

Do not say “I will tell the story of ____,” or “I will do X, Y, or Z.” Actually outline or write the story here in the Introduction, such as “Have you ever found yourself repeating mistakes you have made before?” Actually outline or write the question here.

Enclose transitions within parentheses ( ) on a line or lines separate from the rest of the outline. Transitions may link major sections OR main ideas OR subordinate ideas within the body of the speech.

The body must contain 2-5 main points using patterns of organization covered in the textbook; other patterns of organization must have prior approval by the instructor. Each main point must be well supported by 2-5 1st-order sub-points designed to illustrate the main points (examples, illustrations, facts, quotations, etc.) Don’t overload the audience with information. Move from simple to complex ideas. Move from familiar to unfamiliar ideas. Define your terms.

The body develops your ideas, condenses your thinking and research, ensuring that you have done an adequate job of preparation. The entire outline should contain more material than you have time to use in your speech and must be at least 3 pages in length [2 full + 1 partial). You must use two-five (2-5) main ideas and two-five (2-5) subordinate (sub-points) points for each main point or higher-level sub-point.

The conclusion should restate or summarize the main points and communicate a sense of finality (verbally or nonverbally indicate that you have finished talking). You may end with a story or quotation.

The conclusion (which may be outline or written word-for-word) is designed to

  1. provide the audience with a sense of finality,
  2. leave the audience in the proper mood, and
  3. focus the audience’s thinking on your topic.

Bibliography

The bibliography reports where you found the information for your speech. There are two general sources of information: your own personal experience and what you have learned from outside sources (reading or interviewing). You must indicate where you obtained your information. You are expected to provide at least six sources for this speech.

If some of your information came from your own experience, specify that personal experience in the bibliography. For example, “I based this speech on water safety totally upon my personal experience as a lifeguard at Norms’ Resort, Cottage Lake, for the seven summers from 1959 until 1965.” Your personal experience will count as only one of six or more sources of information required.

You must include and cite properly (in APA format) at least one source from the Columbia College library database. Do not use Wikipedia as a source of information. However, if you cite electronic sources, provide enough information so that I could duplicate your search. Include at least the author or editor, title, date, publication medium, publisher, and the Universal Resource Locator (URL), which includes protocol, site, path, and file.

Preparation Outline 1: Informative

by

Student’s Name

Specific Purpose: (Example) I want the audience to understand the modes of delivery.

Thesis Sentence: (Example) There are four modes of delivery.

Introduction

Body

  1. Use a full sentence for your first main point.
    1. Use a full sentence for your first 1st-order sub-point.
    2. Use a full sentence for your second 1st-order sub-point.
      1. You may choose to use a full sentence or a word or phrase here for your first 2nd-order sub-point.
      2. If you used a sentence for your first 2nd-order sub-point, also use a sentence for your second 2nd-order sub-point. However, if you used a word or phrase for your first 2nd-order sub-point, use a word or phrase for your second 2nd-order sub-point.
  2. Use a full sentence for your first main point.
    1. Use a full sentence for your first 1st-order sub-point.
    2. Use a full sentence for your second 1st-order sub-point.
      1. You may choose to use a full sentence or a word or phrase here for your first 2nd-order sub-point.
      2. If you used a sentence for your first 2nd-order sub-point, also use a sentence for your second 2nd-order sub-point. However, if you used a word or phrase for your first 2nd-order sub-point, use a word or phrase for your second 2nd-order sub-point.