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Abstract

Public speaking pedagogy should be based in communication theory, but as a whole, our discipline has failed to integrate theory and praxis in the classroom. Dialogism is a good starting point for developing the­ory-based pedagogical strategies and is further supported by Vygotsky’s zones of proximal development, Dewey and Bruner’s call for experience-based learning, and research on collaborative learning. Here, I propose four specific strategies for incorporating dialogism into the pedagogy of public speaking courses: (a) use detailed grading rubrics to create a shared meaning of expectations before, during, and after the speech-building process, (b) give instructor feedback on outlines prior to the public speaking performance, (c) incorporate peer workshops that allow students to learn from one another, attain a better understanding of theory through its application in specific speech experiences, and develop better speech performances, and (d) ask students to write critical peer evaluations that help them become more reflective about their own and others’ speeches.