The main function of the Department of Speech is the generation of knowledge about the human communication process. The secondary function is to train speech teachers and provide service courses for other university programs. The BA and MA (Plan A, thesis and Plan B, non-thesis options) degrees are offered with concentrations in interpersonal and organizational relations. Human communication is studied as a unique process of symbolic interaction between persons. Attention is given to the verbal and non-verbal elements of the speech process. Cultural influences are examined. The role of speech is studied in situations ranging from person-to-person persuasion to aesthetic interpretation of prose and poetry, to persuasion in mass movements. Students receive practical training in speech applications to accompany theoretical concepts and models explaining the speech act. Course work, seminars, and student research in the program focus on developing a cross-situational understanding of theory and research in the three areas central to the discipline: message processing, relational management, and social influence.
The department has a strong undergraduate program and also provides non-majors with service courses in speech.
Faculty research is social scientific in nature, with interests in communication in law and health care delivery and other organizational contexts; relationship development, maintenance and repair; message production, consumption, processing and response behavior; nonverbal behavior; argumentation, persuasion and conflict resolution; performance studies; speech pedagogy, social influence and social effects of mass media; and, intercultural communication.
Speech is an interdisciplinary and applied research department with interests in social and educational psychology, anthropology, philosophy, business, sociology, performing arts, folklore and literary criticism. Acquisitions in support of these areas normally supply the needs of this department. Science Technology selectors generally acquire materials on speech impediment and therapy. Department interests in literary works for the study of narrative techniques are met by the literature collection. Most of the titles acquired for the Communication Department are also of interest to Speech.
Audiovisual material in the area of oral interpretation and narrative skills is selected by the Wong AV Center in close consultation with the Speech selector.
Language: English is the primary language.
Chronological: Emphasis is on current material; some historical material is also of interest.
Geographic: No Limitations.
Date of Publication: Primary interest is in current imprints.
Types/Formats of Material Collected: Monographs, journals, annual reviews, dictionaries, encyclopedias, bibliographies, directories, case studies, proceedings, and reports of societies and research organizations form the bulk of the acquisitions. Dissertations are purchased only at the specific request of the faculty. Collections of speeches are acquired selectively. Materials in electronic format are selectively acquired.
Treatment: Practice and theory applications, professional and applied training, as well as reference and bibliographical, legal, medical, business, social and creative aspects, international, intercultural and historical treatments are all of interest.
Compiled: 6/01 Compiler: Jodie Mattos