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Abstract

This study addressed the possibility of utilizing a panel of instructors to evaluate student speeches. Forty-six public speaking students were videotaped during an informative speech assignment. Instructor panels evaluated each speech using the same criteria as the real instructor. This study found that trait error exists in panel grading as it does in individual instructor evaluation. Panel and individual instructor ratings were generally similar but inferior speeches were graded lower by the panel than the real instructor. This suggests that panels may be less likely to experience leniency error and may give more accurate evaluations of weaker speeches. Considerations are offered for the possible use of panel evaluations.