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Policy Debate and Persuasive Speech
 (HON 4397)

1960s archive photo

This course provides students with an understanding of the theory and practice of argumentation, debate, persuasion, and the art of public speaking. Throughout the semester, students will learn how to communicate effectively through speeches and debates using a research process that includes finding multiple sources, reading critically to determine a source’s reliability, sorting quantitative and qualitative data, and assessing the strengths and weaknesses of arguments. Students will become well versed in a wide range of topics in philosophy, sociology, foreign affairs, economic policy, domestic politics, and more. The goal of this course is to develop articulate speakers and communicators, who are knowledgeable about pressing national and global issues. The skills gained in this class are critical to the development of effective leadership. This course will count toward the new minor in Leadership Studies. It is also required for students participating in intercollegiate policy debate competition through the newly created Policy Debate Program. This course is also strongly encouraged for students involved in undergraduate research.