Chapter 6: Introductions and Conclusions
Below you will find examples of informative and persuasive introductions. Notice that each contains the five elements necessary for a good introduction: an attention getter, the establishment of rapport with the audience, the speaker’s credibility, a clear topic reveal, and clearly articulated main points. An important point to mention about the introduction is that the parts should flow or “bridge” into each other. You do not want to have a disconnect between the attention getter, the credibility enhancer, the rap- port, and the reveal. You also can switch the rapport and credibility sections if it makes more sense, but definitely start with the attention-getter and end with the preview.
(Note: We have written these introductions out as paragraphs, but your instructor may require you to present them in a different format in your outline.)
Informative Speech Introductions
My parents knew that something was really wrong when my mom received a call from my home economics teacher saying that she needed to get to the school immediately and pick me up. This was all because of an allergy, something that everyone in this room is either vaguely or extremely familiar with. Allergies affect a large number of people, and three very common allergies include pet and animal allergies, seasonal allergies, and food allergies. All three of these allergies take control over certain areas of my life, as all three types affect me, starting when I was just a kid and continuing today [attention-getter]. Because of this, I have done extensive research on the subject, [credibility] and would like to share some of what I’ve learned with all of you today. Whether you just finished your freshman year of college, you are a new parent, or you have kids that are grown and out of the house, allergies will most likely affect everyone in this room at some point [rapport]. So it will benefit you all to know more about them, specifically the three most common sources of allergies and the most recent approach- es to treating them [purpose and preview].
Topic: Seasonal Affective Disorder (See if you can identify the parts on Example 2.)
When winter is approaching and the days are getting darker and shorter, do you feel a dramatic reduction in energy or do you sleep longer than usual during the fall or winter months? If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, you may be one of the millions of people who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD. For most people these problems do not cause great suffering in their life, but for an estimated six percent of the United States population these problems can result in major suffering. As a student in the registered nursing program here at State College, I became interested in SAD after learning more about it and want to share this information with all of you in case you recognize some of these symptoms in yourself or someone you love. In order to fully understand SAD, it is important to look at the medical definition of SAD, the symptoms of this disorder, and the measures that are commonly used to ease symptoms.
Persuasive Speech Introduction
Topic: Term Life Insurance
You have cried silent tears and uttered desperate prayers, but as you watch the medical team unhook the tubes, turn off the heart monitor and shoot furtive, helpless glances your way, you face the unmistakable reality that cancer has won over your loved one and you are left with unimaginable grief, despair and yes, financial burden. Most of us would not choose to cause our loved ones financial pain on top of the emotional pain of our deaths, but by failing to plan for their financial needs, that is exactly what we do. I have learned a lot about life insurance in my research for this presentation, from taking a thirteen-week course about financial matters, and from the experience of purchasing a term life insurance policy just last year. I know most of you probably have not thought much about life insurance, but someday each and every one of us in this room will pass away and somebody is going to have to pay for our funerals. Term life insurance is affordable, protects those you love from the financial devastation of your uninsured death, and reinforces your commitment to their financial and emotional well-being while you are living. Let’s examine the definition of term life insurance and then its benefits.