Rubric for Assessing Students' Public Speaking and Presentation Skills-Teaching Excellence & Educational Innovation - Carnegie Mellon University

Program: Ph.D. Program, Computer Science Department, School of Computer Science
Assessment: Rubric for Assessing Students' Public Speaking and Presentation Skills

Purpose:

Informal feedback from employers and other graduate schools showed that our graduate students have strong technical and intellectual skills, but weak public speaking and presentation skills. Our overall goal is to ensure that our graduate students have acquired sufficient proficiency in oral and visual presentation skills, so we require students to fulfill a public speaking and presentation requirement. Our immediate goal was to delineate these goals for our students.

Implementation:

The graduate faculty collectively developed a Speaking Review Form, which articulates the different skills that students must demonstrate in a public talk order to pass the graduate program’s public speaking and presentation requirement. When a student gives a public talk, a panel of faculty and students use the Speaking Review Form to assess the student’s performance and provide feedback. A student cannot pass unless at least two faculty and one student in attendance evaluate the student’s overall performance as “good” or better.

Results:

Students are aware of the different skills they must demonstrate before they give their public talks. All students, whether or not they pass after the first public talk, receive feedback on their performance.

Comments:

The department continues to seek informal feedback from employers and other graduate schools to ascertain the effectiveness of this assessment.

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