Public Speaking as an ESL student


A lot of second language learners are intimidated by giving speeches in English.

Let’s be honest: A lot of native English speakers are intimidated by giving speeches in English!

Here is a compilation of 5 tips to help you when you have to give a speech in English:

  1. Build confidence by preparing thoroughly. The more you feel prepared, the less you will worry about the delivery or content of your speech. It will be much easier on you if you come prepared!
  2. Realize that you have something important to share. You shouldn’t see your presentation as something that no one wants to listen to. You should see it as a benefit to the people who are listening. Ultimately, you have knowledge or experience that others don’t, and most people are curious for more. Be confident that you can help inform your audience.
  3. Include your personal experience in your speech/presentation. The most compelling speeches are those where the speaker reveals something about themselves or their background. Audiences love a good story, and you have one to share.
  4. Don’t be self-deprecating. There is no faster way to make your audience feel uncomfortable than to belittle your knowledge base or abilities. So many students start their speeches by saying, “My English is not very good.” or “I am not that prepared.” It instantly makes the audience doubt the person instead of looking for the positives in what they have to say.
  5. Speak up! William Strunk once said, “If you don’t know how to pronounce a word, say it loud!” To which E.B. White added, “Why compound ignorance with inaudibility?” If you speak with volume, you are much more likely to be understood, as well as believed to be confident in what you’re saying. (By the way, you can find this quote, along with 100 others in our free e-book The Power of Language Learning: 101 Inspirational Quotes.)

Also, here is a very good video with some additional tips just so you are 100% prepared:

Adapted from


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