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ERIC Number: EJ1095773
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 34
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1087-0059
Reducing Student Apprehension of Public Speaking: Evaluating Effectiveness of Group Tutoring Practices
Knight, Misty L.; Johnson, Karen Gabrielle; Stewart, Frances
Learning Assistance Review, v21 n1 p21-54 Spr 2016
Research indicates that the fear of public speaking is an extraordinarily common phobia and that a significant portion of the population experiences some form of anxiety over public speaking. Although there is a great deal of research available on the etiology of public speaking anxiety, there is far less research available on interventional strategies to help students who have a fear of public speaking succeed. This study helps bridge this research gap by evaluating the effectiveness of interventional strategies embedded within a public speaking course. Participants in the study included students enrolled in Introduction to Human Communication Studies 100 (HCS 100) at a mid-sized comprehensive university located in the Mid-Atlantic region. Using two HCS 100 sections, there were a total of 56 students from two classes between the ages of 18 and 20. This quantitative study with a qualitative component analyzed three types of collected data that included the following: (1) a comparison between students' achievement of learning outcomes before attending group speech tutoring sessions and after attending group speech tutoring sessions; (2) a comparison between the Communication Apprehension (CA) scores of students before attending group tutoring sessions in public speaking and after attending group tutoring sessions; and (3) student perceptions of the effectiveness of group tutoring and the structure of this tutoring model. Assessment of changes in students' actual public speaking skills were evaluated with an adapted version of the Oral Communication Rubric (OCR). The Personal Report of CA (PRCA-24) was employed to measure the comprehension apprehension of students before and after speech tutoring to determine if students' apprehension about public speaking would decrease as a result of tutoring. Data on students' evaluations of group tutoring was collected at the end of the semester through self-reported measures using the HCS 100 Speech Survey developed by the researchers. After the final speeches had been recorded, researchers collected all three sets of data that included the digitally recorded presentations before (N = 46) and after (N = 21) tutoring sessions, pre-tutoring and post-tutoring (N = 46) ratings of the PRCA-24, and the HCS 100 Speech Survey (N = 41). A quantitative analysis using paired samples t-tests was conducted from the two sets of PRCA-24 and OCR scores. The researchers conducted a qualitative and descriptive analysis of student perceptions from the HCS 100 Speech Survey. This research model provided an empirical instrument that strengthens the premise that practice and tutoring sessions can improve students' ability to deliver speeches with significant improvement in students' proficiencies to provide support for their central ideas, give strong evidence for assertions, effectively structure their content, and use concise language and correct grammar. The importance of a live audience for practicing and presenting speeches cannot be underestimated. Due to the small number of students, broad generalizations to multiple settings cannot be supported.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Personal Report of Communication Apprehension
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A