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Impromptu Speech Topics

Many students have problems with public speaking. Of course, practicing and preparation helps ease the process greatly and make one feel more confident while giving a speech in public. However, when it comes to an impromptu speech, there's too little time for preparation.

That's why impromptu speaking is a real challenge for many. And while it's not possible to ask your professor to give you more time to prepare, it's still possible to do your best to make impromptu speaking easier for you in general. The key here is to pay attention to the rules of impromptu speaking, to pick good impromptu speech topics, and to practice a lot before you even assigned to give a speech.

Why is an impromptu speech important?

Because no matter how much you struggle with public speaking and no matter how you dislike it, there's a big chance that you might need to speak in public unprepared later in life.

Here are some situations when you might need to speak in public with little or no preparation at all:

  1. you need to step in because the scheduled speaker didn't arrive;
  2. you need to answer some questions at a certain panel;
  3. you need to give an interview;
  4. you need to give a report;
  5. you need to introduce yourself;
  6. you need to give a toast at a family event.

If you aren't prepared for that kind of situations, they might seem too stressful and cause you more struggles. However, when you do your homework in high school or college and do your best to learn how to give impromptu speeches and how to pick the right topics for an impromptu speech, you won't be afraid of such situations happening in the future.

What should you know about an impromptu speech?

All high school and college writing and speaking assignment are given to the students to teach them something and to help them build the necessary skills. The same goes for impromptu speeches - they are assigned so students could improve their speaking, learn how to improvise better, and how to structure their speeches well even when they are short of time.

Why is this important? Because knowing that could help you understand what are the main things to focus on while giving an impromptu speech. Though it indeed has to either inform the audience about something or persuade them in something, that's not the primary goal you might want to achieve. Your main task is to present the information well, to organize it right, and to be able to speak confidently even when you have little time for preparation.

How can you achieve that? By practicing at home, picking the right impromptu speech topics for high school or college, and trying out different strategies.

Strategies that can help you ace your impromptu speech

Sure, you might not be able to come up with some good or funny impromptu speech topics when you have only a few minutes to do so. However, you can improve your reaction and problem-solving skills by practicing impromptu speaking at home. Here's how you can do that:

  • Be prepared for the situations when you might be asked to speak.

Going to a party or to a conference of some sort? Try coming up with something to say in case you will be called upon. Though this might not happen, you'll be prepared for any outcome. Moreover, you'll learn how to come up with different speech drafts and ideas really quickly.

  • Ask your own questions.

Let's assume you've been asked to give an impromptu speech - but you struggle with coming up with the right topic. You can start by making an introduction and sharing some information and then encourage the audience to ask you questions related to the topic. If you are familiar with it, you'll be able to give a couple of detailed answers, therefore making your speech more informative and establishing a better connection with the audience.

  • Don't talk too much.

If you managed to come up with good impromptu speech topics or topics, you might be very eager to talk about the subject. However, keep in mind that a strong impromptu speech has to be brief and specific. Instead of talking more, try to come up with more concrete and useful information and then be quiet. Remember that an impromptu speech should last for no more than 5 minutes (though some professors could increase the time limit up to 8 minutes).

  • Maintain the structure.

Every speech has a structure - and an impromptu one has no exception. Don't forget to keep it, crafting a strong introduction, an impressive conclusion, and to paying attention to the body as well. Always try to support your statements with both arguments and examples. Remember that less is more in this case: it's better to use stronger statements supported by good arguments than to speak a lot without using much argumentation at all.

  • Tell personal stories.

Just like we've said above, an impromptu speech is either about persuading or about informing the audience. This means you can use some persuasive speech topics for inspiration - or to focus on telling personal stories instead. After all, when you know well what you're talking about, it's much easier for you to give a speech.

Of course, always keep in mind that that's not a rule. Sometimes you can include some personal examples in persuasive speech as well, making it even stronger. And sometimes telling personal stories simply wouldn't seem appropriate. This always depends on the event.

  • Don't panic and go easy on yourself.

Sure, you want to speak perfectly - most students do. You are probably expecting it to happen if you invested a lot of time and efforts into the preparation process. However, you should keep in mind that practicing at home still differs from giving a real speech. You can polish the process - but this still won't ensure that it will be perfect.

Therefore, don't panic if something goes wrong. Instead, take a deep breath, and return to your speech. Remember: the audience understands the situation perfectly and will be on your side.

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