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Final Review.docx

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McMaster University
Communication Studies
Greg Flynn

Communications Final Review December 9 4pm (2h) 75 MC & T/F  UHC Chapters 3-8  ITC: o LeBon x2 o Alia, Gillespie o Dorman, Bowan, Estok o Lasch x2  4-5 questions per reading  check the links in the slides * just cause we know how to talk doesn’t mean we know how to communicate Chapter 3: Language Language – collection of symbols governed by rules and used to convey messages  Symbolic – arbitrary constructions that represent a communicators thoughts  Meaning in People, Not Words – comes from the way people understand the word  Rule-Governed Rules  Phonological Rules – rules governing how sounds are combined to find words  Syntactic Rules – the ways symbols can be arranged as opposed to the meanings of the symbols o Ex. English Syntax – sentence needs a subject, verb and object  Semantic Rules – governing the meaning of language opposed to its structure o Ex. Bikes are for riding (universal meaning)  Pragmatic Rules – governing everyday use of language (connotations) Power of Language  Satisfies basic functions (describe ideas, make requests, solve problems)  Reflects attitudes – we can shape others through the ways we use language a. Naming o Shapes the way others view us, how we view ourselves & the way we act o Phonetic sound provokes judgment by people who don’t know them o Name is sometimes seen as a hint to sexuality b. Credibility o The way in which someone speaks o Information could be false but the manner its presented in has a huge impact c. Status o Speech influences perceived status (accent, word choice, pitch, tone) o Influences the audience when making an opinion on speaker Sexism & Racism in our Language  Sexism – suggesting that women are of lower status (using he for both sexes) o Ex. Firemen vs. firefighters  Racism – calling indigenous people ‘chief’ Language Reflects Attitudes  Power o Powerful or powerless speech o Knowing the audience and the level of power that is suitable o Polite mixed with powerful can either be effective or show weakness  Affiliation i. Establishing equal status – convergence (accommodating ones speaking style to another at a higher status) ex. Lovers ii. Setting yourself apart from the other – divergence (speakers emphasize differences between their communicative style and others create distance) ex. Physician-client relationship  Attraction & Interest o Demonstrating like and dislike through language – ex. Dick & Jane  Responsibility o Taking responsibility through word choice – ex. “it’s not finished” vs. “I haven’t finished” Troublesome Language  Equivocal words – words with more than one dictionary definition  Relative words – gain meaning by comparison  Slang – used by a group of people with members from a similar co-culture or group  Jargon – specialized vocab used as a shorthand by people with common backgrounds and experiences * misunderstandings with these ^ cause people don’t completely understand the words and phrasings Abstract Language – can be overly abstract or lack specificity, using behavioral description helps avoid abstract language * not all conflicts come from misunderstanding/linguistic problems Disruptive Language – habit, not on purpose! a. Confusing Facts & Opinions – stating ones opinion as fact causes arguments b. Confusing Facts & Inferences – when conclusions are come to based on an interpretation of evidence c. Emotive Language – language conveying the senders attitude to feel a certain way Evasive Language – deliberately used to mislead people  Euphemism – use of a pleasant word to sound more direct ex. Friendly fire  Equivocation – vague statement that can be interpreted more than one way Gender & Language  Similarities and differences between use of language for males and females  Content, reason for communication, conversation style Culture & Language  Varies across cultures – not only due to translation issues  Directness o Low-context – culture that avoids direct use of language; rely on the context of a message to convey meaning (listeners fill in the gaps) o High-context – culture relying on language to make messages of a relational nature  Elaborate or Succinct – strong assertions and exaggerations vs. silence  Formal or Informal o informal (Canada): we use informal when we’re not considered with proper speech o formal (Asia): proper grammar is important when identifying ones class Worldview  Linguistic Determinism – theory that a cultures worldview is shaped and reflected by the language its members speak  Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis – structure of a language shapes the worldview of its users  Linguistic Relativism – moderate form of linguistic determinism arguing that language exerts a strong influence on the perceptions of people who speak it Chapter 4: Listening Misconceptions:  Listening and Hearing Not the Same o Hearing – sound wave striking ear drum and sending signal to brain o Attending – paying attention to a specific signal o Understanding – making sense of a message o Responding – providing feedback to another person’s behavior o Remembering – recalling previously introduced information; two phases: short and long term (people only remember half of what they hear immediately after hearing it)  Not a Natural Process o Skill that must be learned o Can be improved with instruction and training  Requires Effort  All Listeners do not Receive the same Message o Physiological factors, personal interests/needs, social roles and cultural backgrounds Overcoming Challenges to Effective Listening  Faulty Listening Behaviors o Pseudolistening – perceive the appearance of true listening, but mind is elsewhere o Selective Listening – responding to only the remarks that interest the listener o Defensive Listening – sees innocent comments as attacks o Ambushing – listen carefully to gather information to launch an attack on the speaker o Insulated Listening – screening the conversation for topics they don’t want to hear about so they can tune them out o Insensitive Listening – unable to look beyond the words of the speaker and tune in on emotions and feelings o Stage Hogging – don’t receive messages clearly AND try and turn the conversation to be about them  Reasons for Poor Listening o Effort – lack of effort put in o Message Overload – we hear too much everyday to pay careful attention to every single thing o Rapid Thought – physiologically have spare time when people are talking and end up daydreaming or thinking about personal interests o Psychological Noise – personal concerns are distracting o Physical Noise – sound of traffic, other voices o Hearing Problems – medically diagnosed or not, not always aware there is a hearing problem o Faulty Assumptions – brushing off ideas of others under the assumption that they have no value o Talking has more Apparent Advantages – gaining respect, admiration or the liking of others o Cultural Differences o Media Influences – facebook, twitter, youtube, crap Personal Listening Styles  Content-Oriented – looking for details in the content of the message, analyzing an issue from several perspectives  People-Oriented – creating and maintaining positive relationships  Action-Oriented – focused on the task at hand and what kind of response is necessary; getting to the heart of the matter quickly  Time-Oriented – must be efficient and not waste time; minimalize the time it takes to accomplish a task at hand Informational Listening * the approach taken when you want to understand another person  Don’t Argue or Judge Prematurely – listen, understand the speaker then evaluate/argue if necessary  Separate the Message from the Speaker – if the news is unpleasant, don’t shoot the messenger  Be Opportunistic – invest effort in finding the importance of the message; anything useful, where did the ideas come from, lessons that can be learned  Look for Key Ideas – find the central idea/focus  Ask Questions o Sincere Questions – genuine desire to learn from another person o Counterfeit Questions – disguised to send a message, not receive one (make statements, have hidden agendas, etc.)  Paraphrase – restating what the speaker said in your own words to clarify understanding  Take Notes – comprehending doesn’t guarantee remembrance Critical Listening * goal to judge the quality or accuracy of the speakers remarks  Listen before Evaluation – helps prevent making premature judgments  Evaluate Speakers Credibility – are they competent/impartial  Examine the Speakers Evidence – definitions, analogies, statistics and so on  Examine Emotional Appeals – be wary of emotional persuasion Empathetic Listening  Advising – when the speaker provides suggestions about how the speaker should deal with a problem  Judging – receiver makes favorable or unfavorable judgments  Analyzing – listener offers their understanding of the speakers message (maybe the problem was when he…)  Questioning – feedback that requests the speaker to supply extra info to clarify and make sure the receiver understands  Supporting – receiver reassures, comforts or distracts the person seeking help o Be sure the expression of support is sincere o Be sure the other person can accept your support  Prompting – using brief statements of encouragements/silences to draw others out and help them solve their problems  Paraphrasing – reflecting the speakers ideas and feelings to help by understanding them better  When and How to Help – be sure the help is welcome, think about the person and what’s best for them specifically Chapter 5: Non-Verbal Communication Characteristics:  It exists – without speech, we still pick up on the emotions and messages others send  Has Communicative Value – both intentional and unintentional, people recognize it and take it into account when responding  Primarily relational – identity management, defines relationships, conveys emotions  It is ambiguous – can be very vague and often difficult to interpret  Different from verbal – different in complexity, flow, clarity, impact and intentionality  Skills are important – helps with persuasiveness and socio-emotional well being Influences:  Culture – meanings vary in different cultures o Symbol ‘okay’ joining thumb and finger (Canada = okay, Greece = sex invite, France = you’re worth zero)  Gender – stereotypical (macho men, delicate women) Functions:  Repeating – words reinforced by gestures, emblems = deliberate non-verbal behavior with a specific meaning that everyone in that culture knows (pointing to give directions)  Substituting – emblems replacing a verbal message with non-verbal messages  Complementing – illustrators = non-verbal behaviors that match verbal messages  Accenting – emphasizing with gestures  Regulating – cues to signal when parties do and don’t want to speak  Contradicting – non-verbal messages carry out more weight in a mixed message (red face but claiming not to be angry)  Deceiving – non-verbal messages to tell lies (easy to succeed or fail) Types  Posture & Gesture – kinesics = study of body movement, manipulators = when one part of the body grooms, massages, rubs or alters another part  Face & Eyes – most noticed and powerful, affect blends = using two or more expressions that show different emotions  Voice – paralanguage = non-linguistic vocals (rate, pitch, tone), disfluencies = verbalizations like um, er, ah…  Touch – different types and intensities change meaning, increases self-disclosure and compliance  Physical Attractiveness  Clothing – impression management, convey status, education level  Distance – proxemics = how animals and people use space, based on cultural norms  Time – chronemics = how humans use and structure time, time spent waiting can indicate status  Territoriality – fixed space, refers to power and status in communication  Environment – reflects and shapes interaction Chapter 6: Understanding Interpersonal Relationships Characteristics  What makes communication interpersonal? o Quality not quantity; when people treat others as unique individuals regardless of context and number of people present o Impersonal Communication – when quality is the criterion (not group, public or mass)  Interpersonal Communication and the Internet o Those who use the internet rely less on face-to-face networks o Loneliness and depression have increased with online communication o Spending time with family and friends is still top priority o In some cases, the lack of immediacy helps them to build close relationships  Content and Relational Messages o Content messages – focus being discussed/most obvious o Relational messages – statements about how the parties feel about each other  Affinity – degree in which people like or appreciate one another  Respect – the degree in which we hold others in esteem  Immediacy – degree of interest and attraction we feel toward others  Control – the amount of influence communicators seek o Metacommunication – messages that refer to other messages (communication about communication) Intimacy  Dimensions o Physical o Intellectual – exchanging important ideas o Emotional – exchanging important feelings  Male & Female Intimacy Styles – women more willing to share their thoughts and feelings; men less likely to share positive feelings  Cultural Influences – showing emotions, expressing affection, engaging in sexual activity, respecting privacy varies in different countries Relational Development & Maintenance  Developmental Perspective – developmental model; claims that the nature of communication is different in various stages of interpersonal relationships (ex. stairway of going for pizza with someone) o Initiating – first contact made o Experimenting – small talk o Intensifying – expressions of feelings, deeper communication o Integrating – social circles merging, taking on others commitments o Bonding – symbolic gestures (wedding ring, etc.) o Differentiating – re-establish individual identities o Circumscribing – quality and quantity of communication decreases o Stagnating – behave in old ways with no feeling or joy o Avoiding – creation of distance between the parties o Terminating – may end briefly, or over a drawn out time  Dialectical Perspective o Dialectical Model – theory that communicators must deal with equally important and opposing forces like connection & autonomy, predictability & novelty and openness & privacy in all their relationships o Dialectical tensions exist when two opposing forces exist simultaneously o Strategies to manage tensions:  denial – thinking everything is fine  disorientation – overwhelmed and unable to confront problems  selection – respond to one, ignore another  alternation – different ends of the spectrum  segmentation – managing how open the relationship is  moderation – compromising  reaffirmation – acknowledging and embracing tensions  Characteristics o Relationships are constantly changing o Movement is always to a new place Self-Disclosure  Deliberately revealing info that others would not know  Models o Altman & Taylor: social penetration – breadth and depth of disclosure o Breadth – range of subjects being discussed o Depth – intensity of the information being revealed o Johari Window: self-awareness and relational quality o Effective self-disclosure:  Influenced by culture  Usually occurs in dyads  Usually symmetrical  Occurs incrementally  Relatively rare o Appropriate – importance of other personal, reasonable risk, relevant to situation at hand, reciprocated, constructive o Dece
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