Public Speaking Anxiety and Its Effect on Students

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Public Speaking Anxiety and Its Effect on Students

By | October 1999
Page 1 of 5
Public Speaking Anxiety and Its Effect on Students

Introduction

Public speaking anxiety is a problem for many people. Some say that it is the number one fear of Americans over death. There have been many studies done in the general field of public speaking anxiety. I am going to review five articles that touch on various issues surrounding public speaking anxiety. All five of these articles are from Communication journals and are at most five years old.

Literature Review

There have been many studies done on public speaking anxiety in the field of communications. I have chosen these five articles to review because I believe that put together, they give a good background on the recent research done on this subject. The first article looks at student's memories of speeches they have given. The second article looks at how public speaking anxiety affects speech preparation. The third article looks at how speech anxiety changes due to audience pleasantness and familiarity. The fourth article looks at when anxiety actually starts for students given a speech assignment. The fifth article summarizes a study where people with no formal background in communication are asked to explain why people experience public speaking anxiety.

The first article is entitled "Communication apprehension and implicit memories of public speaking state anxiety." Sawyer and Behnke discussed two studies in this article. The first is labeled "Short term memory", and the second is labeled "Long term memory". In study one, their subjects were 44 undergraduate students (22 males, 22 females) that were taking a required basic speech communication class. Each student gave a short two-minute speech to a classroom of 20-25 students. The speeches were videotaped and later played back and reviewed by the instructor. Directly after giving their speeches, the students were asked to fill out Spielberger's (Speilberger, Gorsuch, & Lushene, 1969) STAI...