The Persuasive Speech

The Persuasive Speech
Ideas adapted from
What is a persuasive speech?
 Oratory meant to…
 Convince
an audience that the speaker is
an authority on a topic
 Sway the audience to a certain point of
What are the good and bad portions
of these speeches?
Basic Structure
I. Attention Getter
II. Topic Statement
III.Establish Credibility
IV.Preview Main Points
Attention Getter
 Catches, hooks, and interests the audience
 Using a prop to show something
important about a particular debate
 Stating a shocking statistic
 Telling a dramatic story
 Asking a rhetorical question (but not one
that people will feel like they need to
answer; also avoid asking questions like
“how many people agree/disagree
Topic Statement
 State your topic
 State your stand
 Be clear, be concise
 Today I will be speaking to you about just how wrong the death
penalty is.
 Today I will be speaking to you about just how necessary the
death penalty is.
Establish Credibility
 be specific
 Why are you an expert on this topic now? Be specific.
 My personal experiences with bullying have shown me the
horrors of this criminal act. Furthermore, articles written by
Genie Howe and Keven Tyler support the fact that bullying is
indeed a crime. Despite the fact that some critics, such as
Jennifer Hoxie, may disagree, each point can be counter
argued by the following…
Preview Statement
 State your main points
 You should have at least 2 claims, and you should
refute at least 1 counterclaim for this assignment
Everyone should be required to server two years in the military
after graduation because it would help keep our country
protected and provide a well-disciplined work force for the
future. Even though some people claim that this would violate
our freedoms, it would actually protect our freedoms and our
I. Basic Information
II. Present 3 points
Basic Information
 simple explanation of your topic
 give a definition of your topic
 ** required element of the speech.
Persuasive Approaches
1. Deductive Reasoning: going from a general idea to a
specific idea (syllogisms)
If all will agree with the first general statement and the second
still general statement , then they must agree with the last
statement, which in the case of the speech is your opinion on
the topic.
2. Inductive Reasoning: Going from a specific idea to a
general one usually using the laws of probability.
Over the last 35 years gold has decreased in value by 5% each
year, therefore it is logical to induce that gold will continue to
decrease in value. The final statement should be your stand on
the topic.
Persuasive Approaches
3. Carrot-Stick - gives both sides of the issue and
shows that one side clearly outweighs the other.
List both pros and cons in the speech
Be careful to list them all, so you are not destroyed in the Q&A
Pro/con list in decision making process
4. Primacy/Recency - dictates where you will put your
strongest argument in the body of the speech.
Start with your strongest point, end with your weakest. (anticlimatic)
Start with your weakest point, end with your strongest
What Evidence Is Appropriate?
 Statistics
 Testimony (a direct quote from an authority on the issue)
 Personal Testimony – (telling us about something that
specifically happened to you). This is GREAT because it
helps the audience connect emotionally.
 Deanchoring Beliefs – (appeal to the audience’s emotions
to change their minds.)
Fear is the most common emotion to appeal to. Psychiatrists say
adults share 3 basic fears:
the fear of losing food, shelter and clothing
 the fear of losing freedom
 the fear of the unknown - which includes death
Other emotions are pride, sympathy/pity, anger, affection, guilt, etc.
 I. Summary – restate topic statement
 II. Concluding Remarks - make sure the audience
knows the speech is over
 Take questions from the whole group - not just the
people you know
 Respond to the whole group – others may like to
know the same thing
 Compliment the questioner - That's a great question,
Thanks for asking, etc.
 Never reprimand the questioner - Well, if you had
been listening or Well, that's a stupid question, etc.
Speech Logisitics
 2 outside sources; both sides of
For the speech itself
the issue you chose
Notes from the sources (see
attached notes page)
Works Cited with the sources
Thorough outline (see attached)
Appeal to pathos/logos/ethos
Use of at least 2 rhetorical devices
(questioning, parallel structure,
restatement, repetition,
Minimum of 3 minutes in front of
the class
 You must ask at least 1 substantial
During the
question to a classmate
 You must fill out the peer
evaluations during/after the
 Points are deducted for any
disruptions during the speeches
What are the good and bad portions
of these speeches?