The two tracks are not mutually exclusive, and you can work in both at the same time. Indeed, this is the best way, as they complement each other.
Communication track – Competent Communication Manual (CC)
The Competent Communication Manual is the basic and main manual. It contains ten speech projects that will aid you in developing the skills necessary to prepare and present an effective speech. Each of the projects has a different focus and different objectives. The detailed instructions help you to create and deliver your speeches.
An essential part of Toastmasters is evaluation. After each speech, another Toastmaster evaluates your speech, providing positive feedback and suggestions for improvement.
After you have completed all ten speeches, you receive the Competent Communicator (CC) award. The CC award is an internationally recognized accomplishment, since it comes from our well-established international organisation.
Then you can focus your efforts on the projects in the advanced speech manuals of the Toastmasters program. There are many to choose from! The advanced manuals include more specific projects such as humorous speeches, technical presentations, or special-occasion speeches. They are described in detail on the SITM website.
Leadership Track – Competent Leadership Manual (CL)
The Competent Leadership Manual develops your leadership skills. Combined with prepared speeches, leadership skills help you to further improve your communication skills. The Competent Leadership Manual contains ten projects with other objectives than those covered by prepared speeches. It teaches you other roles in Toastmasters—roles such as Speech Evaluator (where you get better at giving feedback), Timekeeper, Toastmaster (leader of the meeting), Grammarian, Ah-Counter, and General Evaluator. As with the CC projects, other Toastmasters provide written feedback after each completed leadership project.
Advanced work results in the communication track results in these additional awards:
- Advanced Communicator Bronze (ACB)
- Advanced Communicator Silver (ACS)
- Advanced Communicator Gold (ACG)
Advanced work in the The leadership track results in two awards:
- Competent Leader Bronze (CLB)
- Competent Leader Silver (CLS)
Distinguished Toastmaster (DTM)
The Distinguished Toastmaster award is the highest of Toastmaster achievements. It is for those who have achieved both the Advanced Communication Gold and Advanced Leader Silver awards. It typically takes five to eight years of dedicated service and leadership in one’s local club, area, and division to achieve a DTM. Members who have earned their DTM are usually honored and presented with a medal at a district conference.
Learn more about the Toastmasters education program at the Toastmasters International website.