Chris Anderson on Public Speaking

Learn to deliver powerful talks from the Head of TED

Course Details

  • Price: $100 $45 
  • Availability: On Demand
  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Access: Unlimited

What You’ll Learn:

  • Master 5 compelling ways to structure any talk
  • Understand how to use a throughline framework to connect sections of your talk and deliver a coherent, impactful message
  • Practice strategies to start your talk powerfully and get your audience on board
  • Understand techniques to conclude your talk masterfully and leave your audience with a clear take-away
  • Gain strategies to banish stage fright and successfully rehearse


A carefully crafted talk can be the key to evoking empathy, stirring excitement, spreading knowledge, and promoting a shared dream. As the Head of TED, Chris Anderson knows this firsthand. He’s had a ringside seat listening to hundreds of amazing TED speakers whose talks have been viewed millions of times.  

In this course, you’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at what Chris has learned about using public speaking to share powerful ideas. He will walk you through real life examples of TED Talks that worked and also share firsthand stories of mistakes to avoid. 

Whether you are an entrepreneur pitching a company, a nonprofit professional making a fundraising request, or teacher looking to captivate your students, this course will help you become a powerful public speaker capable of leaving a lasting impression.

Format and Timing

  • Individual Course: This course is a series of videos and exercises you can work through on your own.
  • Platform: Udemy (+Acumen developed this course. We host this course on the Udemy platform.)
  • Timing: You can work through the materials at your own pace. There are no required times for you to log in. Your access does not end.

Course Syllabus

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  • 17 video tutorials from Chris Anderson, Head of TED
  • 4 workbooks to help you plan your own talk and put Chris’s techniques into practice
SECTION 1: The Key Elements of Powerful Speaking
  • Video: Welcome Message from Chris Anderson
  • Activity: Introduce Yourself to the Course Community
  • Video: What All Great Talks Have in Common
  • Resource: Find Your Powerful Idea
  • Video: The 4 Types of Talks to Avoid
  • Quiz: Diagnose What Went Wrong With These Talks
  • Video: How to Structure a Successful Talk
  • Video: Resource: Craft Your Throughline
SECTION 2: 5 Tools for Successful Talks
  • Video: The Tool of Connection
  • Video: The Tool of Narration
  • Video: The Tool of Explanation
  • Video: The Tool of Persuasion
  • Video: The Tool of Revelation
  • Resource: Outline Your Talk
SECTION 3: How to Banish Your Fear of Public Speaking and Successfully Rehearse
  • Video: Overcome Your Fear of Public Speaking
  • Video: How Monica Lewinsky Overcame Her Fear of Public Speaking
  • Video: How to Rehearse Your Talk
  • Video: How to Use Visuals With Your Talk
  • Video: Start Your Talk So That People Pay Attention
  • Video: End Your Talk Powerfully
  • Resource: Plan the Beginning and Ending of Your Talk
  • Activity: Practice and Share Your Talk
SECTION 4: Why Public Speaking Matters More than Ever
  • Video: Why Public Speaking Matters More Than Ever
  • Parting Advice from Chris
The course already started. Can I still enroll?
You can enroll up to 2 weeks after the start date of the course.
When will the next course be offered?
We offer our courses a few times a year. Sign up for our emails to be notified of the next time the course will be offered.
Do I get a certificate for this course?
You will earn a Statement of Accomplishment if you complete 5 of 6 assignments, including the final assignment, by the last day of the course.
How do teams work?
We recommend you find friends or colleagues for your team that you can meet with in person each week. Each team member should register for the course individually. You’ll then be able to form your team on the NovoEd platform once the course begins.
Do I have to complete the course with a team?
While we believe taking the course with a team will give you the best experience and chance of completing the course, it is possible to complete the course individually if you wish.
What should I expect from the assignments?
You will create a Life Map, develop your own personal story, integrate it into a larger presentation, and record your presentation for feedback from your classmates. You should allocate at least one hour a week to complete each assignment.

Supported By

Chris Anderson is the curator of TED and recent bestselling author of TED Talks: The Official TED Guide to Public Speaking. Trained as a journalist, Anderson launched more than 100 successful magazines and websites before turning his attention to TED. His TED mantra – “Ideas worth spreading”– continues to blossom on an international scale.

What People Are Saying

"There were some really powerful parts to this course. [...] Chris doesn't waste a syllable. He shares his insights, based on a monumental amount of experience, with great clarity. I've been looking for information like this for a long, long time. So grateful to have finally found it."

Nini White