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CMTH 102: Introduction to Communication: Informative Speeches

A typical assignment you might have in CMTH 102 is to write and give a 4-6 minute informative speech on a topic of your choice, with your ideas about it supported by sources and information you have found through research. 

Your sources should be cited orally in your speech, formally in your outline, and in a bibliography or reference list. The number and types of sources you will need varies by professor. Check your assignment instructions to be sure you are meeting their requirements. 

Use this page if you need help choosing a topic or want to see examples of topics. It also gives suggestions for how you can develop and refine your topic. 

Choosing a Topic

When picking a topic, consider:

  • your professor's prompt and the assignment instructions
  • picking something that interests you and that you want to learn more about
  • something that will be interesting and relatable or important to your audience
  • a personal issue, problem, concern, or experience, since you might have some existing knowledge about it
  • if it's manageable and the right scope (not too broad but also not too specific)
  • if it's likely to have research about it

Remember, you may need to revise and make adjustments to your topic as you start to find information about it. 

Topic Ideas

How To:         become an astronaut, build a boat, learn a foreign language, train your cat

A Person:      famous, historically important, in your family or neighborhood

A Place:        you've visited or would like to visit

An Event:      the Superbowl, natural disaster, historical moment, a cultural celebration, a ritual

An Idea:          free college tuition for all, universal basic income, service-learning, mindfulness, hygge

An Activity:    knitting, basketball, container gardening, running   

An Issue:       controversy over gun control, prison reform, global warming, student debt, death penalty, pink tax, affordable housing

Examples of Past Student Topics

Historical topics (search tip: use books, encyclopedias, and the U.S. or World History databases)

  • fashion trends
  • history of Bethlehem
  • history of Jeeps

Health topics (search tip: use books, encyclopedias, and health databases)

  • the kidney
  • bipolar disorder
  • anorexia
  • caffeine's effect on the body

General topics (search tip: some of these topics are very broad, so you may need to develop and focus them more to have more success researching)

  • obstacle course racing
  • superstitions
  • differences in food in Brazil and U.S.
  • cat breeds and personality types