Summer 2024 - FASS 222 D300

Special Topics in Arts and Social Sciences: Academic Communication (1)

Finding Voice: Public Speak

Class Number: 4419

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    May 6 – Jun 17, 2024: Thu, 1:30–4:20 p.m.

  • Prerequisites:

    15 units.



Introduces to the basic knowledge and skills required for producing accurate, responsible and effective written and verbal academic communication in the arts and social sciences. Topics vary with instructor expertise. No prior knowledge of the topic is required. Suitable for students across all disciplines. Students may take this course for credit up to three times if a different topic is taught. Students with credit for FASS 200 or FASS 205 may not take this course for further credit unless a different topic is offered.


Selected Topics: Finding Voice: Public Speaking
This course is a unique opportunity to deepen your presentation skills through an immersive and dynamic workshop-style course. Over five weeks, you will engage with the many skills necessary to develop greater confidence in your abilities to orally communicate. This will include practical exercises aimed at strengthening your voice, widening your repertoire of non-verbal communication skills, and developing techniques to address performance anxiety. You will also be introduced to core public speaking theory which will allow you to analyze speeches for their structure, style and impact. While much attention will be paid to the more skills-based aspects of presenting, at the heart of the course is a focus on connecting with your own personal stories and exploring your relationship with the audience.

Every week you will have readings that allow you to focus on the key principles behind the work that we will be doing, contemplate the frameworks that drive communication and gain greater insight into the historical perspectives that have shaped the techniques you will be employing. You will then watch videos that provide examples of the concepts covered in the written material and have an opportunity to then reflect and synthesize the readings and viewings with your own personal experiences through written reflections. Finally, and most importantly, you will implement and experiment with these ideas by both creating, presenting and providing feedback on a variety of mini-presentations.


  • Identify, analyze and demonstrate key rhetorical and non-verbal strategies in a persuasive speech.
  • Plan, structure, and deliver a clear, coherent and meaningful message for a specific context.
  • Give and receive relevant and constructive feedback.
  • Experiment with techniques in managing performance anxiety.
  • Reflect on ways that public speech has impacted personal relationships and beliefs.
FASS 222 D300 runs for 5 weeks (sessions on May 9, 16, 23, 30, June 6). The first session is 1 hour, the rest of 4 sessions are 3 hours each. This is a 1 credit course.

You can take more than one FASS Forward 1 credit course, as long as the topic is different. See the other courses here


  • Grading is pass/fail, based on: 3 Speeches, 2 Feedback Exchanges , 2 Written Reflections w/Analysis 100%


This FASS Forward course is delivered entirely in-person. It is designed to improve your skills for future success and work in this class is expected to be of high quality. A competency-based grading system will be used to assess your academic performance and active participation in all learning activities. That means only a P (pass) or F (fail) will appear on your transcript. There is no numerical equivalent for the final grade, and it does not affect either your grade point average or cumulative grade point average.

  • P (pass) means that you have demonstrated your competency in relation to the learning objectives, met all the criteria for the course, and demonstrated the skills you have acquired.
  • F (fail) means that you do not receive credit for the course.



Tucker, Barbara; Barton, Kristin; Burger, Amy; Drye, Jerry; Hunsicker, Cathy; Mendes, Amy; and LeHew, Matthew, "Exploring Public Speaking: 4th Edition" (2019). Communication Open Textbooks. 1.

Chapters 1, 8, 13, 7 and 11.

You will also be required to view several speeches available through Canvas.


Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at:

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating. Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the university community. Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the university. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the university.


Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the term are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.