Essential Public Speaking

The easiest way to become a great public speaker. Learn with online classes, practice in realistic simulations.

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Course overview


Cost: $200

58 lessons, 4 hours

6 case studies

5 simulations

Instant feedback

Course outcomes

Know key theory and techniques to deliver effective and memorable speeches

Easily design your presentation to engage and persuade your audience

Manage nerves and become a confident public speaker

Engage and connect with your audience through storytelling

Enhance your message with body language, eye contact and gestures

Overcome a fear of public speaking and feel comfortable speaking in front of audiences of various sizes

Accelerate learning with realistic practice

Do you find it difficult to talk in front of a group of people? Do you simply not know what to say or are you one of the 74% of people who have a fear of public speaking?

70% of HR professionals say that public speaking is essential for a successful career. Feeling confident in your ability to articulate yourself and inspire your audience can transform your professional and personal life, and help you to reach your full potential.

This course gives you the tools and techniques to successfully deliver a presentation, pitch or speech whenever you want. And, best of all, you’ll even learn to enjoy it! We’ll help you write and structure your speech, use literary techniques for maximum impact, and transform your nervous energy into authentic connection with your audience.

Practice makes perfect

A unique feature of this public speaking course is that we give you the opportunity to practice everything you’ve learnt. You’ll unlock access to 5 simulations of real-life situations, with various audience sizes, so that you can practice your skills in the safety of a virtual environment.

Practice a meeting, speech, or pitch as many times as you like and receive instant feedback on your performance.

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About the simulations

Simulations mimic real-world scenarios and enable you to practice your public speaking. For example, if you have a fear of public speaking, you can practice in a smaller meeting room first and get used to ‘all eyes on you’ before practicing in front of a larger audience.

All the simulations run in your internet browser, so you don't need any additional downloads - they’re there exactly when you need them.

Discover which simulations are in this course in the "Simulations" section.

The easiest way to become a great public speaker

We combine online learning with simulations for a unique learning approach. At certain points throughout this public speaking course, you'll be prompted to practice what you've learnt in the simulations.

Learn online courses

Learn online, anytime

Complete a series of videos, quizzes and case studies at your own pace - available to access at any time for 12 months.

Practice in simulations

Practice in simulations

Build your skills and confidence by putting them to the test in realistic simulations.

Improve with feedback

Improve with feedback

Receive instant feedback on your performance to help identify your strengths and weaknesses.

Reduce nerves through practice

Practice as often as you need to in our realistic virtual environments, ensuring you’re confident for any future public speaking events. Course participants have stated that practicing in simulations has reduced their anxiety, as they get more used to speaking in front of an audience.

Improve your public speaking skills

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Course curriculum

  • Overview of the VirtualSpeech simulations and course. We explain how to access the simulations and how they help you improve your public speaking. We end this section with a brief history on public speaking.
  • Course overview
  • Simulations
  • Public speaking in the 21st century
  • Rhetoric is an important part of public speaking and persuasion. This section covers the key aspects of rhetoric, as we explain what makes speeches easy to listen to and how to add these to your speech.
  • What is rhetoric?
  • Rhetorical situations
  • The canons of rhetoric
  • Ethos, Pathos, Logos: 3 pillars of persuasion
  • What makes speeches easy to listen to?
  • It’s vital that you understand and connect with your audience during your speech. This section covers the different types of audience member, how to maintain their attention and cope with distractions.
  • 4 types of audience
  • 4 types of personality in a meeting
  • Maintaining the attention of your audience
  • Ways to make your presentation more interactive
  • Interacting with the audience at the event
  • Audience members arriving late
  • Questions from the audience
  • Simulation: Connecting with the audience
  • Planning is a vital part of public speaking. Learn how to pick a topic and what to ask yourself before writing your speech. We also show an example product demo, to help you plan for this scenario.
  • Questions to ask yourself
  • Guide to choosing a successful speech topic
  • Purpose of your speech
  • Using statistics in your speech
  • Example: Planning for a product demo
  • Impromptu speeches are amongst the hardest you will do. Learn how you can prepare for these situations and practice in our impromptu simulation.
  • Think fast, talk smart
  • Simulation: Impromptu speaking
  • Impromptu speech topics for practice
  • In this section, we provide frameworks and examples for how to write and structure a speech, with a particular focus on the introduction.
  • How to structure your speech, with examples
  • The importance of the beginning and end
  • The INTRO model
  • INTRO model example - Jamie Oliver
  • Opening phrases to avoid
  • How to end a speech
  • Presentation and slide design
  • Literary techniques are a powerful way to engage your audience. We examine the techniques used by Obama, Churchill and King in some of the world’s most famous speeches.
  • Useful literary techniques
  • Literary techniques example - Barack Obama
  • Two speeches analysed
  • Great speeches that use literary techniques
  • Simulation: Practice literary techniques
  • Nerves are an inevitable part of public speaking. Practice your speech in our large virtual conference, before learning how to manage anxiety from an expert.
  • Role Play: TEDx Talk at short notice
  • Simulation: TEDx Practice
  • Managing anxiety
  • Reducing your nerves
  • How to increase your confidence
  • Example of a nervous speaker
  • From warming up your voice, to actually delivering your speech, this section covers all the fundamental topics required when delivering a speech.
  • 3 easy to implement speaking tips
  • Exercises to warm up your voice before a speech
  • Body language and posture
  • Using the full range of your voice
  • Average speaking rate, with examples
  • Importance of eye contact during a speech
  • The final section of this course gives you simple communication tips and a checklist to go through before your next speech.
  • Simple rules for good communication
  • Checklist for before and after a presentation
  • The Importance of Communication Skills in Business

Your instructor

Dom is your author and instructor for the Essential Public Speaking course, which was named by Forbes in 2020 as one of the ten best online business courses. He's an entrepreneur, engineer, public speaker and immersive tech enthusiast with a passion for finding new ways to learn using technology.

Dom previously worked at Jaguar Land Rover before developing the VirtualSpeech app, the first VR app in the world designed to improve public speaking, and he now speaks about his experience at events around the world.

What simulations can you practice with?

Throughout the course, you'll be prompted to practice your new skills and techniques in one of the following simulations.


Learners in simulations


Faster than classroom training


Learning awards

Features included in simulations

Our simulations are full of features to give you the most realistic practice and help you quickly improve.

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Presentation slides

Upload your own presentation slides into the simulation so you can practice with the slide deck you’ll have on the day.

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Speech analysis

Receive instant feedback on your pace, volume, confidence, use of hesitation words, and more.

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Audience distractions

Learn to handle a variety of common distractions, from phones ringing, to coughing, and technical issues.

"As someone who suffers from public speaking phobia, this threw me right into the lion's den... I encountered flaws in my approach that I would not have discovered until the actual event."

- Ish Laos

"Insanely useful for someone who wants to learn to speak in front of people... I'm now the 'pitch man' for our company, and my pitches opened the door to our (now completed) seed round of funding."

- Jordan Brook

"VirtualSpeech helps conquer stage fright and get someone accustomed to what it feels like to be presenting to a crowd, and thus prepare for the same situation in real life."

Kit Eaton - The New York Times

Master the art of public speaking

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