Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Make America Debate Again

Please join the Coe College Rhetoric Department, Political Science Department and Speaking Center in the viewing of the October 19 Presidential Debates.  We will gather in Phifer Commons from 7:30 - 9:30 pm.  Come view the debate, discuss the issues, and rhetorically analyze the arguments.  Hope to see you there!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

I love Democracy

Hello All! This week we'll take a look at the 2012 election night speeches. Above is President Obama makes a strong effort to reach out to Governor Romney.
Governor Romney speech was quick and gracious. He hit all the right points.

Until next time,

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Hello All! Today, I"ll talk about one of my favorite hobbies, reading. It's something that is now even more accessible through tablets.
The IBooks app can be purchased for free through the App Store. The great part of the app is that it is divided into genres; making a day of browsing simple. I can search the New York Times Best Seller List as well. The downside is that the number of textbooks offered currently is scarce. There are apps on the market that offer a large variety of textbooks. However, these apps can be costly and the risk of bugs is increased.
The features of reading a book through IBooks is impressive. By highlighting a word, I can look up its definition and search the web for more information. I can also highlight or note the word for future purposes. This beats dogearing a print book. I can also search a book by word or by chapter. For those who prefer larger print, the font is also adjustable.
While I think that nothing is more satisfying that curling up to a book in print at night, IBooks serve as a great tool. They make studying a novel quicker and more organized.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Gov. Ann Richards speaks at the 1988 Democratic Convention

Hello All!
Today we'll look at the famous keynote speech of Ann Richards, then State Treasurer for Texas.
In her speech, Richards knew how to play towards her strength-humor. At the beginning, she alludes to having a "real Texas accent" unlike George H.W. Bush who was born in New England. She uses her accent as a tool by stressing certain syllables (HIgh HEels). This use of voice inflection makes her speech more exciting and something all great public speakers understand.
Occasionally, I felt that she overplayed the parallel structure ("and that's wrong"). While having this language handy can be important for any speech, make sure that it isn't too predictable.
Also, notice her great body language throughout the speech. She looks like she doesn't want to be anywhere else. While talking to a rowdy crowd would intimidate even the best speakers, she feeds of the electric energy and makes the speech have a memorable impression. Note around the 20 minute mark she quips, "Poor George..." This zinger became an iconic political catchphrase in part due to the crowd reaction.
One thing to take away from her speech is to be comfortable with your strengths and use them in your speech. If you look uncomfortable with your speech, the audience will sense it.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Dragon Dictation

Hello all! I can defiantly say my experience with testing out Dragon Dictation was...mixed. I'm glad that I have the opportunity to experiment with different apps but things didn't go exactly as planned.

I decided that the perfect class to investigate Dragon Dictation was during my First Year Seminar (FYS). While I'm very fortunate to have professors who didn't seem to mind being recorded, make sure that your instructor is aware ahead of time, as some professors have qualms about being recorded in general.

However, the most disappointing part of Dragon Dictation is the strings attached to the free app. If you're Arantxa, who goes to Ginormous State University and attend classes in large lecture halls, this app is for you. Dragon Dictation produces the best results when the professor is speaking through a mike pack, as the app instructions suggest. My results gave me garbled notes.

Stupidity on my part caused the second problem. I should have gone to Computer Services and addressed internet connection issues. The app kept timing out of the network making the the app nearly useless.

Next week, while I sort out IPad issues, I'll post a classic political speech that's a favorite of mine!


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Welcome Back to Coe!

      Hello interested readers! My name is Clark Cunningham-White and I am a first year student at Coe College. I'm from Holland, Michigan (go Dutchman!), a Cedar Rapids newcomer (go Kohawks!), and a probable English major (go Faulkner!). This year, I'm excited to blog mainly about new apps that help students learn more in and out of the classroom. Ranging from note taking applications to movie making technology, I'll look at programs designed to improve learning. This week, I will test out and review Dragon Dictation and report my findings later in the week. It's a note taking app that is available on IPad.
     As a political junkie, I enjoy watching speeches by candidates. Since this is a blog for the Speaking Center, I will also look at the public speaking methods and rhetorical strategies used by politicians. In a non-biased way, I'll examine the "classic" speeches of the past such as Ronald Reagan's Berlin Wall Speech or Barack Obama's 2004 Democratic Convention address. Perhaps we could bring in political science or history experts to blog about the impact of memorable speeches!
     P.S. This upcoming Monday (September 24th), the Speaking Center is offering a training session from the IHSSA to judge speech events at local high schools! This is a great opportunity for anyone who enjoyed high school speech team or for those who love waking up early on the weekends. This free session runs from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. and judging certification lasts for three years. Stop by the Struve Communication Center in the Eby Learning Anex!

Monday, April 16, 2012

A Thank You Speech

We have all used someone’s help at some point of time in our lives. Whatever little you and I have achieved may not have happened had it not been for a few special people who gave us their time, encouragement and shared their expertise. Here’s a few pointers on how to give a thank-you speech:
Some of the essentials are the same:
·         Who you’re thanking- mention the more important people first
·         What you are thanking them for- be specific as that makes the speech more meaningful
The speech will have 3 parts:
·         Introduction- you can begin by stating the reason for the occasion and why it is you’re going to thank everyone.
·         Body- start with the more important people and give them the most time in the speech. If you have to mention a lot of people but don’t have the time, you can group them according to how they helped you. Example, I would like to thank John, Mike, Greg and Judy for lending me an ear when I needed someone to talk to.
·         Conclusion- summarize your main points and finish.