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SPC_1608_D'Amico: Types of Speeches

Types of Speeches



An informative speech provides factual, unbiased information on a topic. Your goal is to educate the audience, not to persuade. Informative speech topics can be broadly categorized into four types:

  • Objects - anything visible, tangible, or stable in form
    • can be a thing, a place, or a person
  • Processes - a systematic series of actions that leads to a result or product, including:
    • explaining steps or instructions so the audience will understand how the process works 
    • explaining steps or instructions so the audience will be able to perform the process
  • Events - anything that happens or is regarded as happening 
    • can be a common event such as playing a sport or a specific event such as WWII
  • Concepts - a belief, theory, idea, principle, or other abstract idea

A persuasive speech seeks to change the audience's beliefs about a particular topic or issue. Choose a topic in which you feel comfortable being an advocate. Below are three methods to consider when choosing a topic:

  • Questions of Fact - a question about the truth or falsity of an assertion 
    • Goes beyond informing the audience, the speaker can make claims of prediction based on opinion and evaluation of facts 
  • Questions of Value - concerning the worth, rightness, morality, etc. of an idea or action
    • ​Goes beyond personal likes or dislikes, the speaker must justify claims using facts and standards
  • Questions of Policy - whether a specific course of action should or should not be taken
    • Goes beyond questions of fact or value to determine if and in what way something should or should not be done