Skip Navigation

Presentation Skills: Advocating for Change (11:607:381)

  • The course is 100% online, facilitated through Rutgers CANVAS; there are no face-to-face sessions.
  • Modules run Monday – Sunday

Course Description

3 Credits. This course is designed to strengthen students' presentation and public speaking skills with a leadership focus on advocating for change. With a foundation of communication and leadership knowledge, understanding and application, students build a useful skill set useful for other college courses, the workforce, and community, at large. The course enables students to enhance the public dialogue, a powerful vehicle for professional and personal growth.

Course Website, Resources, and Materials

  1. Presentation skills text: No textbook requirement for public speaking content; Module Lecture Notes include requisite content at no additional cost to the student.
  2. Leadership skills text: The Fifth Discipline: The Art of Practice of the Learning Organization, Peter Senge, Currency Doubleday, 2006.
  3. Recording device: Smartphone, Webcam, Flipcam, smartphone, or digital camera (if computer/laptop does not have a built-in camera).
  4. Minimum of TWO audience members when presenting graded video assignments.

Learning Goals

  • Understand and apply basic communication theories, principles and key terms regarding delivery and evaluation;
  • Understand and apply leadership theories, principles and terms for advocacy and change;
  • Analyze the audience and tailor presentations accordingly;
  • Demonstrate critical thinking skills in developing and delivering presentations;
  • Apply appropriate tools and methodology for conducting and presenting research;
  • Identify and formulate positions on relevant issues – local to global;
  • Demonstrate ethical conduct when presenting;
  • Demonstrate effective verbal and non-verbal presentation skills;
  • Effectively evaluate speakers/presentations.

Grading/Assignment Percentages

Assignments Value
Video Presentations 60%
Video Preparation Assignments 15%
Peer Reviews of Video Assignments 10%
Discussion Questions 15%
TOTAL (Test Video worth 1% extra credit) 100%


Students can refer to the specific assignment rubrics to ensure successful academic outcomes (embedded in Lesson tabs). Students can expect assignments to be graded and posted in Gradebook within one week of the assignment deadline. If an assignment deadline is to be missed, communication with the instructor is required before the deadline by email at or phone (732-232-4094), call or text. No communication + missed assignment = zero. Consideration will be applied for special circumstances.

A = 90–100
B+ = 87–89.9
B = 80–86.9
C+ = 77–79.9
C = 70–76.9
D = 60–69.9
F = below 60

Course Schedule

Module One

  • Navigate Canvas Home Pages – including, not limited to: Course Information, Welcome + Course Expectations, Video Assignments, Frequently Asked Questions Syllabus.
  • Purchase required text: The Fifth Discipline: The Art of Practice of the Learning Organization, Peter Senge, Currency Doubleday, 2006. NOTE: there is no required presentation or public speaking text. Content is provided in the given modules via Lecture Notes.
  • Discussion: Week One Icebreaker Discussion Question/DQ. Initial post deadline is Thursday, post/respond/engage until Sunday.

Module Two

  • Lecture: Read through M2 Lecture Notes
  • Discussion: Participate in M2 Discussion Question: Critical Thinking

Module Three

  • Lecture: Read through M3 Lecture Notes
  • Discussion: Participate in M3 Discussion Question: Communication Apprehension
  • Upload Video: Upload Test Video: Self-Introduction (not graded, but required)

Module Four

  • Lecture: Read through M4 Lecture Notes
  • Discussion: Participate in M4 Discussion Question: Ethical Speaking

Module Five

  • Lecture: Read through M5 Lecture Notes
  • Read: Senge Chapter One, Chapter Two and pages 61 and 103-108 (Shifting the Burden)
  • Assignment: Submit Video Prep for Video #1: Learning Organization

Module Six

  • Lecture: Review M6 Lecture Notes: Delivery
  • Upload: M6 Video #1 Learning Organization

Module Seven

  • Lecture: Read through M7 Lecture Notes
  • Review: Chapter One of Senge
  • Discussion: Participate in M7 Discussion Question: Listening

Module Eight

  • Lecture: Read through M8 Lecture Notes
  • Read: Part III in Senge: Chapters 8-11 and pages 68 – 73 (Systems Thinking)
  • Submit Video Prep: Core Disciplines to Advocate for Change

Module Nine

  • Upload: Video #2 Learning Discipline for Leadership

Module Ten

  • Lecture: Read through M10 Lecture Notes
  • Discussion: Participate in M10 Discussion Question: Persuasion
  • Submit: Peer Review for Video #2: Learning Disciplines for Leadership

Module Eleven

  • Lecture: Read through M11 Lecture Notes
  • Assignment: Submit Video Prep for Video #3 Advocating for Change

Module Twelve

  • Lecture: Read through M12 Lecture Notes
  • Upload Video: Upload Video #3 Advocating for Change (reminder: visual aid required)

Module Thirteen

  • Lecture: Read through M13 Lecture Notes
  • Submit: Peer Review for Video #3: Advocating for Change

Module Fourteen

  • Submit: Video Prep for Video #4 Inspirational Leader

Module Fifteen

  • Upload: Video #4 Inspirational Leader

NOTE: There is NO Final Exam for this course, only the final video.

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

Please follow the procedures outlined at Full policies and procedures are at Office of Disability Services website.

Academic Integrity

The university's policy on Academic Integrity is available at policies on academic integrity.

The principles of academic integrity require that a student:

  • properly acknowledge and cite all use of the ideas, results, or words of others.
  • properly acknowledge all contributors to a given piece of work.
  • make sure that all work submitted as his or her own in a course or other academic activity is produced without the aid of impermissible materials or impermissible collaboration.
  • obtain all data or results by ethical means and report them accurately without suppressing any results inconsistent with his or her interpretation or conclusions.
  • treat all other students in an ethical manner, respecting their integrity and right to pursue their educational goals without interference. This requires that a student neither facilitate academic dishonesty by others nor obstruct their academic progress.
  • uphold the canons of the ethical or professional code of the profession for which he or she is preparing.

Adherence to these principles is necessary in order to ensure that:

  • everyone is given proper credit for his or her ideas, words, results, and other scholarly accomplishments.
  • all student work is fairly evaluated and no student has an inappropriate advantage over others.
  • the academic and ethical development of all students is fostered.
  • the reputation of the University for integrity in its teaching, research, and scholarship is maintained and enhanced.

NOTE: Plagiarism includes, but is not limited to:

  • Resubmitting your own work that has previously been evaluated in this class or any other class.
  • Copying text directly from websites and other sources without attributing the original source(s).
  • Copying the work of students in other sections (past or present) of this course.

Failure to uphold these principles of academic integrity threatens both the reputation of the University and the value of the degrees awarded to its students. Every member of the University community therefore bears a responsibility for ensuring that the highest standards of academic integrity are upheld.

NOTE: To help protect you, and future students, from plagiarism, all essay assignments will be submitted through

Attendance and Participation Policy

Students are expected to actively participate in all of the online activities for the course. Attendance in the online sessions is determined by thorough, thoughtful, relevant and on time contributions made in the weekly assignments including threaded discussions, reaction papers and quizzes. The course proceeds with the assumption that students have thoughtfully read and reviewed the assigned materials.

Students are responsible for completion of all assigned readings, materials discussed and assignments on or before the assigned due date.

Student Wellness Services

Counseling, ADAP & Psychiatric Services (CAPS)

848-932-7884 | 17 Senior Street, New Brunswick, NJ 08901

CAPS is a University mental health support service that includes counseling, alcohol and other drug assistance, and psychiatric services staffed by a team of professional within Rutgers Health services to support students' efforts to succeed at Rutgers University. CAPS offers a variety of services that include: individual therapy, group therapy and workshops, crisis intervention, referral to specialists in the community and consultation and collaboration with campus partners.

Violence Prevention & Victim Assistance (VPVA)

848-932-1181 | 3 Bartlett Street, New Brunswick, NJ 08901

The Office for Violence Prevention and Victim Assistance provides confidential crisis intervention, counseling and advocacy for victims of sexual and relationship violence and stalking to students, staff and faculty. To reach staff during office hours when the university is open or to reach an advocate after hours, call 848-932-1181.

Disability Services

848-445-6800 | Lucy Stone Hall, Suite A145, Livingston Campus, 54 Joyce Kilmer Avenue, Piscataway, NJ 08854

Rutgers University welcomes students with disabilities into all of the University's educational programs. In order to receive consideration for reasonable accommodations, a student with a disability must contact the appropriate disability services office at the campus where you are officially enrolled, participate in an intake interview, and provide documentation.

If the documentation supports your request for reasonable accommodations, your campus's disability services office will provide you with a Letter of Accommodations. Please share this letter with your instructors and discuss the accommodations with them as early in your courses as possible. To begin this process, please complete the Registration form on the ODS website.

Scarlet Listeners

732-247-5555 |

Free and confidential peer counseling and referral hotline, providing a comforting and supportive safe space.


Gina M. Suriano
Virtual Office via course platform
732-232-4094 (mobile)

Virtual Office Hours: Virtual Office via CANVAS platform/Modules link monitored every 24-48 hours. Contact via email or phone to schedule one-on-one conference/video chat.