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Structuring A Speech

By Erin Walker

While anyone that can get up the nerve can speak in public, not everyone can speak well. In order to give a good speech there must be a clear structure and order. There are three basic parts of a speech: the beginning, middle, and end. By studying how each should be included in a speech, one can give quality speeches.

The beginning of a speech is the most important part and needs to include a short introduction. It should also include a brief overview of what will be discussed so the audience will know what is to be expected. The beginning should start with a question, quote, or statement that will instantly have the audience’s attention. Speaking in front of groups of people is like meeting someone new. The first few minutes are crucial in forming an opinion. After only a few minutes of listening to the speaker the audience will judge whether the speaker is nervous, fascinating, or cocky. If the interest of the audience is not captured within the first few minutes, most likely it will be lost. Start a presentation or a speech with a bang. Be creative.

The middle of the speech should be a series of clearly outlined points. It is thought that odd numbers of points are more easily remembered than even numbers. Three and five are the two most commonly used sets of numbers. Anything with more than five main points becomes difficult to recall.

The ending is the second most important part. The ending should include a brief summary of what has been discussed, and the speaker should make any concluding comments quickly. The key to a powerful ending is to be quick and strong. More and more people are ending their speeches with fragmented sentences such as, “And that’s a little about hydraulics for you. So . . .”. Ending a speech with “so” or with a weak ending such as “that’s all I have for you all,” are unacceptable. This is the last chance for a speaker to impress the audience. It is also the last chance to remind them of what has been said.

Structuring a speech is important to gain the respect of an audience. Structuring is also important when it comes to a house. An orderly, clean house with a security system gives a structured appearance that will frighten burglars away.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Walker, Erin "Structuring A Speech." Structuring A Speech. 10 Jul. 2010. 22 Dec 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Walker, E (2010, July 10). Structuring A Speech. Retrieved December 22, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Walker, Erin "Structuring A Speech"

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