Lydia Bailey, content coordinator of Masters Programs Guide, has shared with us a handy graphic that pulls into one place many useful insights in dealing with the fear of public speaking. (Full graphic at the end of this post.) Continue reading
I’ve read a few posts lately mentioning that eye contact is hard for a speaker, even experienced ones. (One place I just saw it is in the very good article “5 Public Speaking Tips that Build Relationships.”) I agree! But I also want to push a little beyond the initial resistance we have to it.
As Dr. Michelle observes, “Making eye contact allows you to connect with your audience.” The emphasis here is on genuine contact. The old saws about picking out a spot on the back wall or looking at their foreheads do not work simply because they don’t establish contact. While the idea of contacting a stranger that intimately seems threatening at first, once you do you’ll discover something very pleasant: there is no such thing as an audience! Continue reading
I’ve noticed the last few years that students seem to bring a slightly higher degree of beginning presentation skills into the classroom. I suspect this comes from growing up surrounded by hundreds of cable channels and YouTube.
It has even reached the point where the old saw about public speaking being the number one fear is no longer true. I thought perhaps it was, indeed, a steady trend of increasing confidence. If so, this semester doesn’t fit the trend. In fact, students have generally had more trouble with the second speech round than the first speech round. Continue reading
Richard Garber makes the point well that the often-quoted idea is wrong: fear of public speaking is probably not as widespread as we’ve been told. Communication anxiety is still very widespread, as the research cited shows. It’s just not as universal as we’ve heard (and as I’ve often said in class). You can see this between the lines and explicitly in his article, “What’s the difference between a fear and a phobia?“