What would Algeta have said to me if I were to tell her that her healthy lifestyle would be the reason that she would die one day?
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Effective conclusions may employ illustrations, quotations, personal references, or any of the other methods of introduction we have discussed. In addition, there are at least two other distinct ways of concluding a speech: with references to the introduc- tion and with inspirational appeals or challenges.
”Raise your hand if you will join me in planting the seed of hope in our youth.” When you ask your audi- ence to respond in some way to your message, you help to provide closure at the end of your speech. [Photo: Uppercut Images/Getty Images Inc. RF]
PPurposes of Your Speech Conclusion Summarize the Speech
• Reemphasize the central idea in a memorable way.
• Restate the main ideas.
• Give verbal or nonverbal signals of the end of the speech.
• Motivate the audience to respond.
196 CHAPTER 8 Introducing and Concluding Your Speech
Methods Also Used for Introductions Any of the methods of introduction discussed earlier can also help you conclude your speech. Quotations, for example, are frequently used in conclusions, as in this com- mencement address by U2 lead singer Bono:
Remember what John Adams said about Ben Franklin: “He does not hesitate at our boldest measures but rather seems to think us too irresolute.”
Well, this is the time for bold measures. This is the country, and you are the generation.28
References to the Introduction In our discussion of closure, we mentioned referring to the introduction as a way to end a speech. Finishing a story, answering a rhetorical question, or reminding the au- dience of the startling fact or statistic you presented in the introduction are excellent ways to provide closure. Like bookends at either side of a group of books on your desk, a related introduction and conclusion provide unified support for the ideas in between.
Earlier in this chapter, you read the extended illustration Matt used to open his speech on the dangers associated with BPA. He concluded the speech by referring to that introduction:
What would Algeta have said to me if I were to tell her that her healthy lifestyle would be the reason that she would die one day? Well, she was my grandmother. I knew her very well, and she was completely stubborn, so she would have called me crazy . . . but today I’m going to let you decide what her answer should have been.††
Matt’s conclusion alludes to his introduction to make his speech memorable, to mo- tivate his audience to respond, and to provide closure.
Inspirational Appeals or Challenges Another way to end your speech is to issue an inspirational appeal or challenge to your listeners, rousing them to an emotional pitch at the conclusion of the speech. The conclusion becomes the climax. Speechwriter and communication consultant James W. Robinson explains why such conclusions can work well:
It’s almost as if, for a few brief moments [the audience] escape from the stressful demands of our high-pressure world and welcome your gifts: insightful vision, per- suasive rhetoric, a touch of philosophy, a little emotion, and yes, even a hint of corniness.29
One famous example of a concluding inspiration appeal comes from Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech:
From every mountainside, let freedom ring, and when this happens . . . when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”30
†† Matt Miller, “A Situational Speech: Bisphenol A” from Winning Orations 2009, Mankato, MN: Interstate Oratorical Association, 2009. Reprinted by permission.
Effective Conclusions 197
That King’s conclusion was both inspiring and memorable has been affirmed by the growing fame of that passage through the years since he delivered the speech.
In the conclusion of his investiture speech, Jake Schrum, president of South- western University in Georgetown, Texas, issued this unique and effective inspira- tional challenge to his listeners:
Before I end my remarks, I invite all Southwestern alumni and all Southwestern stu- dents to stand and to remain standing for my final words.
Years ago, I knew a woman named Audry Dillow who had been a school teacher all of her adult life. In her eighties when I met her, we often reflected on the attributes and beliefs of college students. Frankly, she was not as pos- itive about the goodness of students as I was.
One day, she asked me, “Jake, are there students today who truly care about someone other than themselves, who really care about the world, who are genuinely good at heart?” I said, “Yes.” She said, “Who?” I said, “What do you mean, ‘Who?’” She said, “Who—who are they? Give me their names.”
You must proofread your paper. But do not strictly rely on your computer’s spell-checker and grammar-checker; failure to do so indicates a lack of effort on your part and you can expect your grade to suffer accordingly. Papers with numerous misspelled words and grammatical mistakes will be penalized. Read over your paper – in silence and then aloud – before handing it in and make corrections as necessary. Often it is advantageous to have a friend proofread your paper for obvious errors. Handwritten corrections are preferable to uncorrected mistakes.
Use a standard 10 to 12 point (10 to 12 characters per inch) typeface. Smaller or compressed type and papers with small margins or single-spacing are hard to read. It is better to let your essay run over the recommended number of pages than to try to compress it into fewer pages.
Likewise, large type, large margins, large indentations, triple-spacing, increased leading (space between lines), increased kerning (space between letters), and any other such attempts at “padding” to increase the length of a paper are unacceptable, wasteful of trees, and will not fool your professor.
The paper must be neatly formatted, double-spaced with a one-inch margin on the top, bottom, and sides of each page. When submitting hard copy, be sure to use white paper and print out using dark ink. If it is hard to read your essay, it will also be hard to follow your argument.ADDITIONAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE CLASSDiscussion Questions (DQ)
Initial responses to the DQ should address all components of the questions asked, include a minimum of one scholarly source, and be at least 250 words.
Successful responses are substantive (i.e., add something new to the discussion, engage others in the discussion, well-developed idea) and include at least one scholarly source.
One or two sentence responses, simple statements of agreement or “good post,” and responses that are off-topic will not count as substantive. Substantive responses should be at least 150 words.
I encourage you to incorporate the readings from the week (as applicable) into your responses.
Your initial responses to the mandatory DQ do not count toward participation and are graded separately.
In addition to the DQ responses, you must post at least one reply to peers (or me) on three separate days, for a total of three replies.
Participation posts do not require a scholarly source/citation (unless you cite someone else’s work).
Part of your weekly participation includes viewing the weekly announcement and attesting to watching it in the comments. These announcements are made to ensure you understand everything that is due during the week.
APA Format and Writing Quality
Familiarize yourself with APA format and practice using it correctly. It is used for most writing assignments for your degree. Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for APA paper templates, citation examples, tips, etc. Points will be deducted for poor use of APA format or absence of APA format (if required).
Cite all sources of information! When in doubt, cite the source. Paraphrasing also requires a citation.
I highly recommend using the APA Publication Manual, 6th edition.
Use of Direct Quotes
I discourage overutilization of direct quotes in DQs and assignments at the Masters’ level and deduct points accordingly.
As Masters’ level students, it is important that you be able to critically analyze and interpret information from journal articles and other resources. Simply restating someone else’s words does not demonstrate an understanding of the content or critical analysis of the content.
It is best to paraphrase content and cite your source.
For assignments that need to be submitted to LopesWrite, please be sure you have received your report and Similarity Index (SI) percentage BEFORE you do a “final submit” to me.
Once you have received your report, please review it. This report will show you grammatical, punctuation, and spelling errors that can easily be fixed. Take the extra few minutes to review instead of getting counted off for these mistakes.
Review your similarities. Did you forget to cite something? Did you not paraphrase well enough? Is your paper made up of someone else’s thoughts more than your own?
Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for tips on improving your paper and SI score.
The university’s policy on late assignments is 10% penalty PER DAY LATE. This also applies to late DQ replies.
Please communicate with me if you anticipate having to submit an assignment late. I am happy to be flexible, with advance notice. We may be able to work out an extension based on extenuating circumstances.
If you do not communicate with me before submitting an assignment late, the GCU late policy will be in effect.
I do not accept assignments that are two or more weeks late unless we have worked out an extension.
As per policy, no assignments are accepted after the last day of class. Any assignment submitted after midnight on the last day of class will not be accepted for grading.
Communication is so very important. There are multiple ways to communicate with me: Questions to Instructor Forum: This is a great place to ask course content or assignment questions. If you have a question, there is a good chance one of your peers does as well. This is a public forum for the class.
Individual Forum: This is a private forum to ask me questions or send me messages. This will be checked at least once every 24 hours.