Informative Speech Outline

Brian Carter, acupuncturist, herbalist, and author

Brian Carter

Informative Speech Outline
by Brian Benjamin Carter, MS, LAc

Brian has been a public speaker for five years, and has been a guest on national radio shows, and is president of his local speaking club, Toastmasters of La Jolla. He teaches at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine and maintains a private practice in San Diego, California, and is the author of Powerful Body, Peaceful Mind: How to Heal Yourself with Foods, Herbs, and Acupressure.


If you're looking for how to create your own informative speech outline, you've come to the right place. If you want an informative speech outline sample, go here instead. You're getting that and so much more - check out my 8 step process for creating an informative speech below.

This is my 8 step process for creating an informative speech. So far, we've gone through the first 4 steps. You might want to go back and start with an earlier page. I'll wait here for you. :-)

  1. A list of example informative speech topics
  2. How to get an idea informative speech topic.
  3. Brainstorming (fleshing out) a good informative speech topic
    including a beautifully messy scanned copy of my own brainstorming notes

  4. An informative speech outline sample
  5. (THIS PAGE)
    Creating your own informative speech outline

  6. How to write a informative speech
  7. The text of my free informative speech, and then finally...
  8. The audio mp3 of this example of informative speech along with full notes on why I performed it the way I did.

Creating your Outline

Well, if you've viewed my informative speech outline sample, and you've seen how that evolved from my original brainstorming session, and you know why I chose my informative speech topic, you've probably already gotten your own good idea, your own brainstorming done, and you're ready to create a spiffy, logical, methodical, superduper informative speech outline. We're going to do that by using your brainstorming page.

If you aren't there yet- if you've just been reading along for more info-
choose your topic and do a brainstorm page FIRST.

Go do it! :-)

I'm serious. Stop and go do it right now!


Ok. I'll assume you're ready.

Did you notice on my sample brainstorming page - besides my awesome handwriting - that I divided the page up with lines? Remember, the red parts weren't there originally- I just wrote out a bunch of stuff, then I went back and drew boxes/trapezoids/triangles around the disparate sections of content. This is the beginning of the informative speech outline. The essence of outlining is separating and organizing.

The other thing you may have noticed is that I circled some things:

  • Practical, tool, lens, yin and yang
    • Practical was a heading for the section of content.
    • Tool and lens were circled because that was a metaphor I planned to use.
  • Under the red 'Part I' section you can also see that I drew some arrows- these will turn into headers and subheaders in the outline.
  • Finally, about halfway through the process, I had some ideas about the biggest topics within the speech- so I wrote the rough overview outline that's under the red 'Outline'.
  • The outline is in order:
    • I. Who cares what yin and yang are until we know that it's relevant to us? and who doesn't want more options for how to see reality, if that gives us more insight? (always answer the audience's silent 'who care?' question - they won't fully listen to the rest if you don't)
    • II. But what the heck are yin and yang? (don't assume they know)
    • III. Another slightly more advanced idea (don't want to get too complicated, but don't want them to think it was watered down or too simple)
    • IV. Practical applications (another answer to 'who cares' to try to inject it into their daily life, so the speech will live on, so their lives will be better for it)

A common mistake of new speakers is having too much to say and thus going over their allotted time. Sometimes this comes from being nervous about speaking and overpreparing to compensates.

It's mcuh more important that your audience get it (the most important part of your message) than that they remember every little detail. Because they won't anyway. They'll remember the part that makes the biggest impression. That's why I think my yin yang glasses were a divine spark of genius. It's visual, it's funny, and hopefully they remembered it. In fact, I'll go back and ask them what they remember and let you know...

Next, boil your big informative speech outline down to a simple one- not too unlike my original simple one on the brainstorming sheet. The process of doing the whole big outline helps you know what to say, and the little informatve speech outline helps you stay on track while you're up there speaking.

This little outline should definitely be less than a page- no more than 5 sections to it, and no more than 3 things under each- remember, don't try to say too much! How many boring college professors have you had? Too many!

The most common speaking mistake of the academic type is to rely exclusively on their expert knowledge. It's the rare but more effective speaker that translates expert knowledge into fun, everyday language. I do this in my medical terminology classes, too, because that could be such a boring subject!

The next step is how to write a informative speech.


  • If you're nervous about giving your talk, or want to know more about
    • Getting the audience into it
    • Getting your points across
    • Not putting them to sleep, and
    • Feeling good about it after you're done giving it
    • ... then you need to listen to the audio example of informative speech and read my notes on the performance.

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All information herein provided is for educational use only and not meant to substitute for the advice of appropriate local experts and authorities.

Copyright 1999-2074, Pulse Media International, Brian Carter, MSci, LAc, Editor

Good Informative Speech Topic - Yin and Yang