fullscreen background
Skip to main content

Winter Quarter

Winter Registration Now Open
Most Classes Begin Jan 09
shopping cart icon0

Courses

« Back to Professional & Personal Development

COM 42 — Improvisationally Speaking

Quarter: Winter
Day(s): Tuesdays
Course Format: Live Online (About Formats)
Duration: 9 weeks
Date(s): Jan 17—Mar 14
Time: 7:00—9:05 pm (PT)
Refund Deadline: Jan 19
Units: 2
Tuition: $605
Instructor(s): Matt Abrahams, Adam Tobin
Limit: 30
Class Recording Available: No
Status: Open
 
DOWNLOAD THE SYLLABUS » (subject to change)
Winter
Live Online(About Formats)
Tuesdays
7:00—9:05 pm (PT)
Date(s)
Jan 17—Mar 14
9 weeks
Refund Date
Jan 19
2 Units
Fees
$605
Instructor(s):
Matt Abrahams, Adam Tobin
Limit
30
Recording
No
Open
DOWNLOAD THE SYLLABUS » (subject to change)
Concerned about an upcoming Q&A session? Anxious about adding your thoughts in a meeting? Afraid of needing to present your hour-long business proposal in 20 minutes? Many of us are uneasy about speaking in public, especially in an impromptu, off-the-cuff manner. However, much of what happens in our personal and professional lives requires exactly this type of communication. By building on our natural speaking and improvisational abilities, we will become more comfortable presenting with authority and awareness.


Informed by scholarly research, this hands-on course combines theory, basic principles, and methods of effective public speaking and improvisation in action. Through individual and collaborative exercises, you will learn how to speak extemporaneously with greater confidence and clarity, regardless of content or context. Lessons will directly apply to professional and life skills. The course will emphasize development and delivery of formal presentations and less-formal, impromptu speaking opportunities (e.g., job interviews, introductions, toasts, and question-and-answer sessions) through up-on-your-feet activities. We will explore such topics as gaining confidence and conveying credibility, engaging with your material and audience, and quickly putting ideas together. Everyone will participate in improvisational exercises.

MATT ABRAHAMS
Lecturer, Stanford Graduate School of Business

Matt Abrahams is an educator and coach who has published research articles on cognitive planning, persuasion, and interpersonal communication. He is the author of Speaking Up Without Freaking Out and the host of the Stanford GSB podcast Think Fast, Talk Smart. He received an MA in communication from UC Davis.

ADAM TOBIN
Senior Lecturer, Film and Media Studies, Stanford

Adam Tobin is a screenwriter and playwright. He created the series About a Girl and Best Friend’s Date for Viacom’s TeenNick (formerly The N channel) and received an Emmy for his work on Cash Cab. Tobin has also written the script and lyrics for She Persisted, The Musical, a New York Times Critic's Pick, based on Chelsea Clinton’s book. He has taught story seminars at DreamWorks Animation, Blue Sky Studios, and Aardman Animations. He received an MFA from the USC School of Cinematic Arts.

Textbooks for this course:

(Required) Matthew Abrahams, Speaking Up without Freaking Out: 50 Techniques for Confident and Compelling Presenting 3rd Edition (ISBN 978-1465290472)
(Required) Patricia Madson, Improv Wisdom: Don't Prepare, Just Show Up (ISBN 978-1400081882)