Thursday, 24 February 2011

Expository Speech Checklist (Oral Exam)

ü Conduct an Audience Analysis
     Ask yourself:
  • What do they have in common? Age? Interests? Ethnicity? Gender?
  • Do they know as much about your topic as you, or will you be introducing them to new ideas?
  • Why are these people listening to you? What are they looking for?
  • What amount of detail will be effective for them?
  • What tone will be most effective in conveying your message? (E.g. neutral, animated/comedic, assertive, serious etc?)
  • What might offend or distance them?             
ü Practice the Speech before a friend or in front of the mirror       
     After you have completed the task, ask yourself the following questions:
    • Which pieces of information are clearest?
    • Where did I connect with the audience?
    • Where may listeners be confused about my description or explanation?
    • Where may the listeners become bored?
    • Where did I have trouble speaking clearly?
    • Did I stay within my time limit? (5 MINUTES)
    ü Complete speech outline with references

    General Tips
    1. Practice the Attention Getter (i.e Short story, Quote, Poem etc, related to the topic, used to grab audience’s attention before beginning speech)
    2. Help audience to listen and stay focused. Avoid lengthy sentences, use humour where appropriate)
    3. Use only the most significant and relevant examples when explaining/describing/informing.
    4. Utilize transition words (E.g. firstly, secondly, In concluding, In closing etc)
    5. Ensure that body language/posture during speech is not distracting and that you are neatly attired

    Wednesday, 9 February 2011

    Language Registers

    Register refers to the perceived attitude and level of formality associated with a variety of language. The relationship between the writer's attitude and the variety chosen is very important in the study of written language. In face to face speech, the listener can easily interpret the attitude of the speaker by examining the speaker's tone of voice, facial expressions and overall body language. This is not possible in writing. The writer has to use speacialized features of discourse to convey or mask attitudes. It is then the reader's reponsibility to correctly interpret the writer's attitude, tone and level of formalityLanguage Registers range on a scale from most formal to most informal. The five levels identified have been given specialized names by Linguists; frozen, formal, consultative, casual and intimate.
    1. Frozen: This is where the use of language is fixed and relatively static. The national pledge, anthem, school creeds and The Lord's Prayer are examples of a frozen register. In essence it is language that does not require     any feedback.
    Example: "All visitors are invited to proceed upstairs immediately."
    2. Formal: This describes language used in official and ceremonial settings. For example in court, in a business meeting, at a swearing in ceremony, in an interview or in a classroom etc. The language used in these settings is comparatively rigid and has a set, agreed upon vocabulary that is well documented. In other words, the language used is often of a standard variety.
    Example: "Would everyone please proceed upstairs at once?"
    3. Consultative: This describes language used for the purpose of seeking assistance as is suggested by the word 'consult'. It also describes the language used between a superior and subordinate. In both cases one person is deemed as more knowledgeable and having greater expertise and the other person is the beneficiary of such knowledge and expertise. The language dynamism between lawyer/client, doctor/patient, employer/employee and teacher/student are examples of this type of register.
    Example: "Would you all please go upstairs right away?"
    4. Casual/Informal: This describes language used between friends. It is often very relaxed and focused on just getting the information out. Slangs are quite often used in these instances.
    Example: "Come on upstairs now."
    5. Intimate: This is used to describe language used between persons who share a close relationship or bond. This  register would take into account certain terms of endearment, slangs or expressions whose meaning is shared with a small subset of persons. For example lovers having special terms of endearment, mothers giving pet names to their children based on some character trait and best friends formulating slangs based on some shared past experience.
    Example: "Come up nuh/ Unu naa go up?/ Unu naa forward?"

    Thursday, 3 February 2011

    Study Skills - SQ4R Method

    Surveying the material involves looking at topics, sub-topics,charts, graphs, maps and summaries before any in depth reading is done. It is what is also known as skimming.

    This involves coming up with questions that you would like an answer for. As you read you should be coming up with answers for your formulated questions.

    This involves reading each subsection in an effort to answer your formulated questions.

    At this stage you should attempt to orally recall all the points you have read.

    Write down what you have learnt in your own words making note of any personal associations.

    At this stage you will go over what was learnt in a particular chapter. This may be done with the aid of review questions.