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The Problem of Public Speaking Anxiety

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According to the Chapman University Surveys, the fear of public speaking continues to top the list of the most common phobias in the world–slightly above the fear of death in second place; and bugs and snakes in third place.

No one is born as a public speaker. Every person has to undergo trainings, learning process and challenges. One of those challenges is to overcome anxiety on public speaking. Raja stated on his study that when people find themselves in situations where they become the focus of attention as they have to address an audience, they experience emotions like fear and anxiety, leading to nausea and excessive sweating.

Public Speaking Anxiety (PSA) also known as Glossophobia is a social anxiety that arises from the real for anticipating of an oral presentation. There are many reasons which contribute to public speaking. Even one’s recitation in classroom which was accompanied by criticism from the teachers in childhood, the person is more likely to develop public speaking anxiety in later life than the other.

This is supported by the Condition Theory of Hoffman which states that anxiety is a learned condition; that negative life experiences can shape people to behave in certain ways, and to avoid certain things.

Similarly, Grewee’s study reports teaching the students about the distinct experience of PSA will not only help alleviate its experience in the classroom, but also give them the necessary skill to manage it outside of the classroom.

The most engaged kind of students in public speaking are student leaders of student councils. Aside from their mandate to lead and govern the students properly, they are duty bound to interact and maintain engagement with the other students and explain their plans and programs to prosper transparency and good governance. Likewise, Baker states that student leaders are expected to present numerous talks to both small and large groups of audience and if they become victims of public speaking anxiety, communication barrier will be formed resulting to poor connection with other students and a negative implication to them as leaders.

As a conclusion I want to notice that the researchers believe that the study of the effect of anxiety to the public speaking performance of college student leaders of OMSC will raise the interest of the academic community in the importance of confidence building and raising public-speaking skills of the students.

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