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Oral English Competency

(3 hours)

The Oral English Competency develops the ability to interpret, compose, and present information in oral form to specific audiences.

Timeline: The Oral English Competency must be met before students complete 56 hours of coursework. Because of this timeline, students seeking to satisfy this requirement by successfully completing the Oral English Competency Examination must pass the exam by the time they have completed 56 hours of academic credit at CMU. Students who transfer 36 or more credit hours to CMU may take the Oral English Competency Examination prior to the conclusion of their first year of study at CMU.

Requirement: Past coursework in debate, speech, and oral communication can help to determine how students choose to meet the Oral English Competency. There are two ways students may satisfy the Oral English Competency:

  1. Earning a grade of C (2.0) or better in one of the following courses: COM 101, COM 267, COM 269, COM 357, TAI 170, TAI 302 (see course titles and descriptions below).


  2. Earning a passing score on the Oral English Competency Examination. The Oral English Competency Examination requires the development and delivery of a ten-to-fifteen minute public speech accompanied by a properly typewritten and detailed outline. The student delivers the speech, which is evaluated by a faculty member assigned to oversee the examination. Students receive written feedback, and students who receive unsatisfactory examination results will be allowed one retest. Students who fail twice are required to obtain a grade of C (2.0) or better in one of the Oral English Competency courses listed above.

The Oral English Competency Examination is administered twice a year on the Friday prior to the beginning of the fall and spring semesters. Guidelines, registration materials, and other information can be obtained by contacting the Certified Testing Center ( or call 989-774-1092.

Oral English Competency Requirement for Non-native Speakers of English: Students for whom English is not their native language may fulfill the Oral English Competency Requirement by earning a grade of C (2.0) or better in ELI 199 American Language for International Students: Speech Component. (See description below)

Oral English Competency Courses:

The following courses are approved for Oral English Competency. TAI 170 is also approved for UP Subgroup I-B.

COM 101Introduction to Communication


COM 103Oral Communication in the Online Environment


COM 267Introduction to Debate


COM 269Practicum in Debate/Forensics


COM 357Public Speaking


ELI 199American Language for International Students: Speech Component


TAI 170Oral Interpretation of Literature


TAI 302Voice and Diction