SPE 101 Outline Exam

Title Your Speech

TopicWrite out the topic you have selected.

General Purpose: Type of speech you are doing (to inform, to persuade, etc.)

Specific Purpose: This is the general purpose + your topic + your desired audience response

Central Idea:  Your thesis statement – a single, declarative sentence telling your audience your subject and purpose for the speech (refer to Ch. 5)

Organizational Pattern:  Provide the type of pattern you’ve chosen for the main points (topical,

chronological, etc.)


I.            Establish attention-getter here.  Use full sentences throughout this outline.

II.            Reveal the topic here. Pay particular attention to how Roman Numerals are used throughout.

III.           Establish credibility here.  Explain how the topic interests you, or how you have some key knowledge regarding the topic that most people will not have.

IV.         Establish relevance (or goodwill) here. Tell the audience why, even if they are not

interested in the topic, how it impacts them or is important to them. V.          Preview the main points of the speech here.

[Transition statement:  Introduce the first main point.]


I.             The first full sentence here should tell the audience your key sub-points in this main point by using particular catch-phrases that you will repeat in sentences next to A, B, and C.

A.   This sentence introduces the first sub-point as its own idea; whenever you have an A

you must have at least a B.

1.This should be a full sentence to support the first sub-point - it is more specific and describes the larger idea of A through common knowledge or research.

2.This is another support of the first sub-point and should be a separate idea from the one above; additionally, if you have a 1 you must have at least a 2.

a)   Sub-sub-point (this could be to list items, etc.)

b)   This could be a sentence indicating something in the list or something more specific to illustrate 2.

3. You can have as many sub-sub-points as you see fit, really.

B.   This sentence will introduce the listener to the second sub-point; you want to treat B in the same fashion as A above by breaking down the idea into more specific components.

C.   This sentence will introduce the listener to a third sub-point if needed.

[Transition statement:  Introduce the second main point – remember to use the same words from the preview.]

II.            This sentence will introduce the sub-points for your second main point by using catch- phrases that you will repeat in the sentences below next to A and B.

A.   Just a tip:  Microsoft Word will default to different ways of constructing this outline.

1.That’s absolutely okay, as long as you’re consistent in your approach.

2.However, it is imperative that you follow the guidelines of including the goals, labels for parts of the speech, connective statements, and Roman Numerals.

a)   The Roman Numerals are especially critical as they represent the main points.

B.   If you want to keep this format, you need to play around with your auto-correct feature.

1.For Windows 2007 users, the auto-correct for outlines is located on the “Home”


a)   The menu is right next to where you would use bullet points. i.               It is listed as “Numbering.”

b)   When it defaults to something you don’t like, click on the “Numbering”


i.        From there, you can change it to whatever you think is appropriate.

2.Did you notice how I made sentences much more specific in this section?

a)   Everything should be similar to this with one sentence representing each idea, and the outline providing the path for ideas to stem off of each other.

[Transition Statement:  Write your transition statement introducing the third main point here using the same phrasing from your preview sentence.]

III.           This sentence next to this Roman Numeral will introduce the sub-points of the third main point using catch-phrases that will be used next to A, B, and C.

A.   This sentence will establish the idea of the first sub-point.

1.Let’s say one of your supports for the sub-point is a piece of research.

2.You need to write out the research as you would say it, and then at the end use proper APA or MLA source citation to reference the material.

3.Here’s an example of what this will look like.

a)   Andree Mcleod, a government watchdog in Alaska, wrote in a press release on June 24, 2010 that “Sarah Palin continues to disappoint. Today’s findings make it obvious that she’s out for herself” (Dunn,


B.   This sentence will introduce your second main point, and you can make it much more specific by customizing 1, 2, and 3 below if necessary.

C.   This sentence will introduce a potential third main point, and again, you need to make the idea much more specific by having a 1 and 2.


I.             This sentence will signal the end of the conclusion and review the main points, which basically means you rewrite the preview statement here in the past tense.

II.            In the next two areas, you want to wind-down a bit before getting into the concluding device.

III.          Discuss the relevance or importance of this topic in hindsight:  now that you’ve taught the

audience about your topic, how is it important moving forward?

IV.         Finish with a concluding device:  a story, famous quotation, rhetorical question, etc.


Please use either APA or MLA source citation.

You must have your sources listed in alphabetical order and have an appropriate hanging indent for all entries.

Great resource online is the Owl at Purdue.  https://owl.english.purdue.edu/

Dunn, Geoffrey. “Palin guilty of major ethics act violation: must return $386,000 in contributions.” The

Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, Inc. 24 June 2010. Web. 2 July 2013.