Douglas M. Fraleigh is a professor and chair of the Department of Communication at California State University, Fresno. He is the co-author of Speak Up: An Illustrated Guide to Public Speaking, 3e.
Q: What courses are you teaching this semester?
DF: I just finished two sections of public speaking for our Honors College this spring and I am teaching Persuasion to our majors this summer.
Q: What advice do you give your students who have public speaking anxiety or general communication apprehension?
DF: Believe in yourself; I can't wait for you to share your ideas with our class.
Q: What has been your favorite course to teach and why?
DF: Freedom of Speech, because it is essential for society (and it was my favorite course as an undergraduate).
Q: What advice do you have for other instructors who teach this course?
DF: Help and encourage students to apply the principles they are learning to the many free speech issues confronting society today.
Q: What are some of your research interests?
DF: Freedom of Speech, Argumentation, Public Advocacy.
Q: If you could create (and teach) a brand new course for your department, what would it be?
DF: Evolutionary Psychology and Communication or Sports Communication.
Q: What do you think is one of the biggest challenges students face now when they enter college?
DF: Balancing the greater academic workload that college entails with other life obligations (especially work).
Q: What motivates you to continue teaching?
DF: I really enjoy going to class and working with our students and sharing my passion for the subjects that I teach.
On a personal note...
Q: How do you spend your time when you're not teaching?
DF: Running (5k, 10k, half-marathons); spending time with my family (especially sporting events, plays, and our family fantasy football league); walking and hanging out with our dogs, Dawson and McCarthy; reading.
Q: If you hadn't pursued a career in higher education, what career path do you think you would have chosen?
DF: Civil rights/civil liberties attorney.
Q: What was the last book you read?
DF: I'm reading Hamilton right now. Can't wait to see the musical when it comes to Cali.
Q: Where is one place you want to travel to, but have never been?
DF: The Andes.
Q: When you sit down to listen to music, which artists or genres do you go to most?
DF: Alt Nation XM36. Love the Hamilton Soundtrack too.
Q: What is something you want to learn in the next year (communication-related or otherwise)?
DF: I'm very interested in Evolutionary Psychology and I'm trying to incorporate it into my teaching more.
Q: What is one thing people would be surprised to learn about you (i.e., What's your "fun fact")?
DF: I dance when students' phones go off in class.