822179 :Speechen en debatteren voor publiek (T&C)
(Speeching & Debate for Audience (T&C))

General info

Instruction language Dutch
Type of Instruction lectures and seminars (Lecture schedule)
Type of exams written exam and presentation (Examination schedule)
Course load:6 ECTS credits
Registration:Enrollment via Blackboard before start of lectures
Blackboard InfoLink to Blackboard (When you see 'Guest are not allowed in this course', please login at Blackboard itself)


dr. E. Oversteegen (coordinator)


Knowing how to persuade is an important faculty - be it sometimes dangerous, as the political situation in the world may demonstrate. It is a well-known fact that persuasion is not a purely rational process: rational reasoning (or ‘logos’) is only part of the process. Emotion is often equally important, as is evidenced in various fields of science (marketing, political science, rhetoric, etc.). In this course, we study verbal persuasion as it occurs in (several types of) speeches and debates. We discuss theories on the function of ratio and emotion in speech and debate, and the role of the speech context. From the perspective of these theories, we analyze speeches, successful or manipulative, by politicians (like Obama, Trump, Wilders, etc.). Besides, the students will exercise both in speeching and in debating in the class room. Course goals are:

  • the student knows the conditions for valid argumentation

  • the student can optimize argumentation

  • the student has knowledge of classical rhetoric

  • the student can analyze and evaluate different types of speeches

  • the student can write a speech and can adapt it to the speech situation

  • the student has knowledge of pragma- dialectics

  • the student can analyze and evaluate debates

  • the student has some training in speaking for an audience

  • the student has some training in debating


Two perspectives on rhetorics are taken in the course: a fundamental perspective and a practical perspective. The former focuses on theoretical notions and analysis - the latter on application and casuistics.

  • As a model for analyzing speeches, the classical rhetorical model is used, enriched by modern (psychological, persuasion) insights. For the ‘logos’ part, argumentation theory will be employed. For the ‘ethos’ and ‘pathos’ parts, psychological and psycholinguistic insights will be called upon. The insights are illuminated by modern speeches (especially by politicians). 

  • As a model for analyzing debates, the Pragma-dialectic model for argumentation is used. In this model, the discussants, their obligations, and their rights all play a part.

The course contains a balanced mix of lectures by the lecturer and analysing or speeching/debating by students


Note: this course replaces Retorica & Argumentatie 822146.

Participation in the seminars is compulsory.

Students have to give a presentation, which will be assess as pass or fail. The learning objectives are also assessed in a written exam. Both components (presentation and exam) have to be a pass in order to pass the course.


Compulsory Reading

  1. Een boek (Leith, 2012) en 6 wetenschappelijke artikelen.

Required Prerequisites

see specifics

Compulsory for

  • Bachelor Communicatie- en informatiewetenschappen: Leraar Nederlands ( 2015, 2016, 2017 )
  • Online Culture: Leraar Nederlands ( 2015, 2016, 2017 )
  • Premaster Academic Teacher of Dutch Language and Literature ( 2016, 2017 )

Recommended option for

  • Business Communication and Digital Media ( 2015, 2016, 2017 )
  • Text and Communication ( 2015, 2016, 2017 )
  • Human Aspects of Information Technology ( 2015, 2016 )
  • Bachelor CIW: New Media Design ( 2017 )