Primary Author and Editor: Dr. Barbara G. Tucker
Ms. Amy Burger
Mr. Chad Daniel
Mr. Jerry Drye
Ms. Cathy Hunsicker
Mr. Matthew LeHew
Ms. Amy Mendes
Mr. Nick Carty
Ms. Kim Correll
Ms. Jackie Daniels
Mr. Zach Drye (graphics)
Dr. Clint Kinkead
Dr. Sarah Min
Dr. Tami Tomasello
Dr. Marjorie Yambor
In Memory of Dr. Kristin Barton, Originator of the Project and First Editor
For questions regarding this textbook, contact:
Dr. Barbara G. Tucker
Department of Communication
Dalton State College
650 College Drive
Dalton, GA 30720
Lorberbaum Liberal Arts 107B
This text exists under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 License, and as such it may be used for non-commercial purposes. Any portion of this text may be altered or edited; however, author attribution is required, and if you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must distribute your contributions under the same license as the original. Portions of this text were adapted from a free, open-source textbook without attribution as requested by the work’s original creator(s) and licensee(s). The authors of Exploring Public Speaking request that you let them know if you plan to use all or a major part of this textbook as a primary text for your basic communication classes.
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Photographs are used by permission of the Office of Marketing and Communication at Dalton State College and are copyrighted 2017.
Introduction to the Fourth Edition of Exploring Public Speaking
Exploring Public Speaking: The Open Educational Resource College Public Speaking Textbook began as the brainchild of Dr. Kris Barton, former Chair of the Department of Communication at Dalton State College in Dalton, Georgia. It also was made possible through a generous Textbook Transformation Grant in 2015 from Affordable Learning Georgia, a highly successful program of the University System of Georgia. In applying for the original grant, Dr. Barton asked me to help him author/compile the text.
The original goal of our creation of Exploring Pubic Speaking was to provide a high-quality, usable, accessible, and low-cost textbook for the hundreds of students who take COMM 1110 at Dalton State College every year. This course is required of all degree-seeking students. We have already been able to save hundreds of thousands of dollars for students at our institution with this text.
Dr. Barton and I worked on creating the textbook from July 2015 until May 2016, with the goal of going live with the text in Summer of 2016. Tragically, Dr. Barton passed away in early May 2016. He has been greatly missed as a friend, colleague, father, scholar, teacher, and mentor.
However, the launch of the book proceeded. In Summer 2017 I took on a significant revision and update, which I named the Second Edition. In that edition, I included information on college student success in the appendices for institutional reasons, and we have chosen to continue including those. In January 2018, colleague Matthew LeHew and I won a grant from the University System to create the ancillaries and improve the format for more accessibility. In April 2019, we were awarded another mini-grant to further revise the text and create a website for it. For this fourth edition, we have removed “Dalton State” from the title and examples for wider appeal. An appendix on library research retains the information for specific use of Roberts Library on our campus.
We felt these changes were needed in the fourth edition because, unexpectedly and happily, the text has also been downloaded close to 40,000 times from the GALILEO site as of August 2019 by readers all over the world, is used on six continents, and has been adopted at many other institutions. These institutions include state universities, well-known private universities, community and technical colleges, liberal arts colleges, and dual enrollment programs. Faculty users are welcome to contact me at the email address on the copyright page for access to the ancillaries until the website is ready.
Over 90% of the book is originally by Dr. Barton, me, or other colleagues at Dalton State College. Some parts, specifically from Chapters 9, 10, and 15, are adapted from another open resource public speaking text whose author prefers not to be cited.
In Exploring Public Speaking, especially in its second through fourth editions, we have attempted to create a usable, zero-cost textbook for basic public speaking courses or courses that include basic public speaking skills as one of their primary learning outcomes. The free, open nature of the text means that instructors are able to use all or part of it, and add their own materials.
We believe this text addresses all the subjects that traditional publishers’ books would address in an appropriate writing style and with appropriate college-level learning theory in mind. The appendices address some additional topics that might be excluded from most texts, but that we believe add to the experience: learning theory, plagiarism, speaking online, speaking to diverse audiences, and humor in public speaking. In the third and fourth editions we have added “case study” examples and some different outline samples.
We think this book is especially useful in coverage of PowerPoint, audience analysis and responsiveness, ethics in public speaking, persuasion, special occasion speeches, and structure of speeches. Because it was written by communication professors with decades of experience in the classroom, we are aware of the needs of basic public speaking students. Three ancillaries are currently available: electronic “flash cards” for study, PowerPoint slide decks on the 15 main chapters, and test banks for the 15 main chapters. When the website is developed, it will include videos of student speeches.
Two editorial notes: As per the American Collegiate Dictionary (2016), in most cases we use the pronoun “they” when the antecedent is an indefinite pronoun, whether singular or plural, to avoid the awkward he/she/him/her/his/her combinations.
Second, we admit to some redundancy in the textbook. Because it is an open educational resource, some users do not access the whole text. For clarity, sometimes a concept that is explained in a preceding chapter is re-explained.
Thank you for downloading Exploring Public Speaking, and the co-authors and I truly wish you happy teaching and learning with it. We welcome input. If you choose to use it, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org. We keep a database of those who contact us about the book so that we can contact you about the text.
Barbara G. Tucker