CAS 100 is a course in public speaking that is required of all Penn State University students. The Department of Communication Arts and Sciences is proud to be the home for this important course, and we take seriously our mission to provide students with the confidence, expertise, and skills to speak in public and group settings about important topics in our society. You can find answers to frequently asked questions about CAS 100 by exploring the topics below.

CAS 100A stresses skills in effective public speaking for civic participation. The course teaches students how to develop and present messages to cultivate understanding, to generate support for policies, and to motivate others to take action. The course also teaches critical skills in self-reflection, argumentative critique, and audience analysis.

If you are having issues enrolling in CAS 100 or have questions regarding CAS 100, please complete this form.

CAS 100A emphasizes speaking in public about public matters. CAS 100B focuses on collaborative communication, such as deliberation and group presentations. CAS 100C centers on message evaluation and analysis. Students should select the letter that best suits their interests and the requirements of their programs of study.

First, students can sign up for CAS 100 in the next semester. Many sections of CAS 100 are offered every semester. Also, as students progress through their education, they can sign up for courses on earlier dates. Second, during the first week of classes, the enrollment changes within sections. Students should watch for openings in CAS 100 sections right before and right after courses begin.

CAS 100A sections labeled as “speech anxiety” are limited to students with profound communication apprehension (that is, well beyond butterflies in the stomach before giving a speech). The course covers principles of effective speech as well as ways to manage speech anxiety. It shows up as 100A on transcripts and counts as such, degree-requirement-wise.

Students cannot directly enroll into CAS 100A sections labeled as “speech anxiety.” Students must first communicate with the course supervisor to determine their eligibility. Those students who qualify will be enrolled by department staff.

Students who are interested in the course should email the course supervisor, Mary High, and briefly explain their desire to enroll in a “speech anxiety” section. Please indicate the concerns that have prompted you to seek a course for students who struggle with severe communication anxiety. Mary will then provide information about the course and work with you to determine if it’s the right option for you.

Likely yes. Students are encouraged to talk with their advisers about required courses for their degree, since some departments insist on a particular letter. For students in the Schreyer Honors College, CAS 137/138 fulfills the CAS 100 requirement.

This section of CAS100A is for ESL/second-language speakers of English who want to learn the principles of public speaking with other ESL students.  It is open to any eligible student who wishes to enroll.  The curriculum is identical to CAS100A with some additional language instruction.

Please contact Kyoko Matsumura ( if you have questions on eligibility or class description and to enroll in the course (depending on availability). 

Students enrolled in Effective Speech for engineers learn how to present significant social problems and engineering-based solutions. Incorporating innovative techniques in presentation slide design, students are challenged to make technical information accessible to a general audience. Engineering students are not required to enroll in CAS 100A sections controlled for Engineering students.

When you search for CAS 100A in LionPATH, sections 070 through 083 of the course are reserved for Engineers. Once you click on a section of 100A in LionPATH, you can see the following information in the Class Notes for Engineering sections : “ENGINEERING STUDENTS ONLY.”