Communications Class

Discussion Board Forum Prompts

Discussion Board Forum 1: Self-Introduction

Purpose: This assignment gives you an initial experience in speaking before your classmates via a 3–4-minute Discussion Board Forum video thread and in satisfying some basic requirements for this course’s speech presentations. Concentrate on satisfying these basic requirements and on speaking extemporaneously as if conversing with someone rather than from memory or a manuscript. You also must view your classmates’ self-introduction videos and post typed replies (no fewer than 3 replies).

Description: Choose a life-changing event, something other than your conversion or salvation experience, and an important lesson that you learned from the experience. Choose an event that will help your audience better understand who you really are. Be sure to select just 1 lesson that you derived from the experience. This must not be a simple chronology of your life to the present; rather, it must focus on 1 event in your life and must help your classmates better understand who you are. Three brief examples below:

· A student once spoke to the class about an accident in which she was involved. Her near-death experience caused her to see her life differently and changed her values significantly. First, she told of the horrible accident and then of her time in the hospital recovering and contemplating her “second chance at life.” Second, she shared the lesson that she derived from the experience: the realization that every day is a gift from God and that we must use our moments wisely since we are never guaranteed a tomorrow. This was a serious and well-received speech.

· Another student recalled how he once won a major athletic competition and came away from the experience with an arrogant attitude that ultimately estranged him from many of his friends. Event-by-event, he first walked the audience through the story from the winning of the championship to the loss of his friends. He then shared the lesson that he derived from the experience: the fact that pride is destructive and that we must accept both victories and defeats with a spirit of humility. This, too, was a serious and well-received speech.

· Still another student told the class about a scary but humorous incident in which she once disregarded her father’s advice always to make sure the car is fueled before leaving home; then, after running out of gas on a remote country road, she had to hitchhike a ride on an old farm tractor to the nearest gas station. After sharing the story, she presented the lesson that she learned: that one must always check the gas gauge to ensure the car is sufficiently fueled before driving somewhere.

Grading Criteria: Have fun with this self-introduction but be sure to satisfy each of the following simple grading criteria. You will need to satisfy the last 3 of these criteria later in your major speech presentations, so this is a great opportunity to form the habit of satisfying them: 


1. You must state your name and hometown before you begin.

2. You then must recall a life-changing event in your life and a lesson that you learned from that life-changing event. 

3. You must speak extemporaneously as if conversing with someone. Do not read your self-introduction or recite it from a memorized script.

4. You must deliver the speech from a visually obvious standing position of about 8–15 feet from the camera, and your face and the top half of your body must be visible at all times during the speech.

5. You must limit your speaking to the assigned 3–4 minute time range.


You must post written replies (no fewer than 75 words each) to 3 or more of your classmates’ self-introduction videos. Each reply must state something substantive in response to something specific that your classmate stated in his/her video. You will not receive credit for excessively general comments that could be contrived and posted in response to any speech.

Recording and Uploading Requirements: Post your speech’s video file to Discussion Board Forum 1 (Module 1) by following the Uploading a Video to Blackboard with Kaltura tutorial, which is found in the Assignment Instructions folder in Blackboard.

1. Record your speech. Use your camcorder to record the speech. Be sure to stand 8–15 feet from the camera while recording and to speak extemporaneously. 

2. Upload the speech file. Use the Uploading a Video to Blackboard with Kaltura tutorial, which is found in the Assignment Instructions folder in Blackboard.

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