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In response to a call for increased research on educational quality of online public speaking courses, this study assessed online course impacts on students’ (N = 147) speaker anxiety and self-perceived communication competence. A significant decrease in speaking anxiety occurred over the course of the semester, supporting efficacy of the online basic speech course at the university level. However, the predicted significant increase in self-perceived communication competence was not found, warranting additional considerations in online course designs. The significant reduction in speaking anxiety within the online course is promising and suggests that this learning goal can be met in this instructional setting. However, since enhancing students’ self-perceived communication competence remains a critical learning outcome of the basic communication course, these findings suggest that online course development heighten focus on related interventions.



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