Excerpt from course description

Persuasion and Dialogue for Leaders


Leaders must be able to honestly and persuasively present new ideas to their colleagues, motivate them, and prepare them for change. Just as important, if not more so, leaders must be willing to listen to the responses their colleagues have to these new ideas and have the skills necessary for participation in constructive dialogue with them. They must be able to defend their proposals and at the same time remain open to helpful criticism and suggestions. This course aims, therefore, to develop these essential communication skills for good leadership in our students. Students will draw upon theory, but this is a hands-on course, and the emphasis is upon the application of theory to relevant communication situations.

Course content

Tentative: 10 lectures in plenary session. 3 to 4 interactive workshops in small groups.

Part 1.

  • Critical thinking: argumentation analysis 
  • Critical thinking: assumptions and fallacies
  • Rhetoric
  • Ethos, logos, pathos, using examples from student manuscripts and popular speeches 
  • Speech analysis
  • Storytelling 
  • Dialogue as ethical communication. Introduction to the Mutual Learning Model.
  • Challenging dialogues - case study

Part 2

  • Small groups. Ethos. Speeches, followed by individual feedback on body language, voice.
  •  Students turn in drafts of their manuscripts. In class - feedback
  • Exercise - dialogue for constructive feedback
  • Dialogue. Tools for practicing the Mutual Learning Model
  • Visual Aids
  • Logos for the persuasive speech: argumentation, critical thinking, case study
  • Speech delivery with individual feedback
  • Draft of manuscript - feedback
  • Mock exam - exam preparation


This is an excerpt from the complete course description for the course. If you are an active student at BI, you can find the complete course descriptions with information on eg. learning goals, learning process, curriculum and exam at portal.bi.no. We reserve the right to make changes to this description.