An Examination of Junior High and Middle School Speech Education Programs in the United States


Jay Stubbs

Date of Graduation

Summer 1990


Master of Arts in Communication



Committee Chair

Richard Stovall


This study examines junior high and middle school speech education on a nationwide basis. Previous research has not examined middle level speech education. This research was conducted in two phases. The phase one survey contacted state activity directors to collect data concerning speech education on a statewide basis. This survey was followed by the phase two survey which was directed at middle level speech teachers across the country. The data collected from phase two identified speech education in the individual school on the curricular, co-curricular, and extra-curricular levels. Results of this research show speech education has not made significant improvements over the last thirty years. Specifically, most middle level schools do not offer speech or drama as a curricular offering. While some speech skills are supported on the co-curricular level, extra-curricular speech activities are lacking in middle level schools. This study demonstrates the need for further research concerning why school districts do not devote more classroom time to speech courses; middle school philosophy as it relates to speech education; why speech content in middle level schools lacks focus and consistency; and why speech certified teachers are not used more in middle level schools.

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© Jay Stubbs