Module 7 Assignment: Oral versus Written Style

This assignment is designed to explore the difference between written and oral style.

Step 1: Choose one paragraph from a written text. You should not choose dialogue from a book, nor a text written in casual or conversational style. It might be something you’re reading for a different class, for instance– or even something you wrote yourself. Your text should be between 150 and 250 words. If it’s an online text, cut and paste your paragraph into your assignment. If it’s a print book, article, or newspaper, you can take a picture and include the image in your assignment.

Step 2: Read the text carefully to figure out what it’s saying.

Step 3: Decide what changes you’d have to make to deliver this text verbally to a general audience. How long are the sentences? Should they be shortened for oral delivery? How complex is the vocabulary? Can you simplify the wording? How can you make the main points more memorable?

Step 4: Rewrite the text as a speech manuscript. Depending on the text, you may find that you need to change it quite substantially.

Grading Rubric

Grading Criteria Percentage Percentage Earned & Comments
Select text for assignment 10%
Change sentence structure and length for oral delivery 20%
Rephrase or explain words that won’t be clear when heard instead of read 20%
Simplify wording 20%
Make the text more memorable through repetition, alliteration, and other rhetorical devices 20%
Format draft of speech manuscript 10%