Theory and Process of Communication Complete Notes: Part 1 - 92% on final

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Mass Communication, Advertising & Public Relations
COM CM 380
All Professors

I THEORY BASICS Humanistic Social Scientific Philosophy: free will Psychology: patterns Subjective Objective Inductive: research then theory Deductive: theory then research Qualitative research Quantitative research Goal: describe phenomenon Goal: explain, predict and control Ex: women’s studies Ex: Biological Anthropology Ontology: Pragmatist Ontology: Determinant, Realist Epistemology: Relativist Epistemology: Universal Stance Axiology: Value Laden Axiology: Value Free ONTOLOGY Nature of being or nature of human interaction What is there to know? Truth vs truth Determinist (passive) vs pragmatist (active) Realist (there is truth but we haven’t found it yet) VS nominalistic (truth keeps changing) VS social constructivist (e.g. sex and gender) (social standards, ex: beauty preferences we think he’s more successful because he’s taller EPISTEMOLOGY Knowledge How do we know what we know? Universal stance vs relativists Objective vs subjective AXIOLOGY Values or influence Can research be free from bias? Value free vs value laden What makes a good theory? Scope: is the comprehension appropriate? Appropriateness: is it logically consistent with assumptions? Heuristic Value: does it generate new ideas? Validity: is it “true” and generalizable? Parsimony: is it logically simplistic? Openness: does it invite challenges? A “GOOD THEORY” -conceptually interesting -constantly evolving -collaborative GENRES OF THEORY 1) Cognitive/Behavoral -focus on individual’s thoughts and actions 2) Interactionist -focus on dyads/relationships (ex: theorizing about a marriage) 3) Structural (how its made)/Functional (how it works) -focus on groups and organizations 4) Interpretive -focus on meaning 5) Critical -takes interpretive to a deeper level -focus on meaning with intent to change SEMIOTICS Study of signs and symbols 1) Semantics How signs relate to referent Connotative (ex: snow – no school, skiing) VS denotative (dictionary meanings) Onomatopoeia – cultural representation (how it sounds) 2) Syntactics Relationship among signs in formal process (e.g. grammar) Ex: lost a planet, obi wan has Object subject – verb order 3) Pragmatics Practical use of signs Shortcuts: influence of ---, texting and tweeting Ex: omg, btw, lmao Cultural and generational distinctions Ex: wicked, y’all, da bomb SYMBOLIC CONVERGENCE Shared meaning in a culture GRICE’S AXIOMS 1) Quantity – Amount of talk 2) Quality – Truthfulness 3) Relevancy – Topic 4) Manner – Organized CONVERSATION IMPLICATURE Ways to manage violations (ex: exaggerations, humor) THEORY OF REASONED ACTION A person’s behavioral intention depends on the person’s attitude about the behavior and subjective norms 1) Attitudes generally lead to behavior 2) beware of influence of social norms FUNCTIONS OF ATTITUDES 1) Utilitarian – reward 2) Social Adjustive – relation to others (showoff) 3) Value Expressive- show off values High and Low Self-Monitoring Extent to which someone is conscious of their appearance to others Fundamental Attribution Error Individuals attribute blame and credit incorrectly, generally because of bias Locus of Control Internal (dispositional) US External (situational) THEM II INTERPERSONAL/RELATIONSHIP THEORIES UNCERTAINTY REDUCTION THEORY We are uncomfortable with uncertainty Motivated to reduce uncertainty Reduce uncertainty by seeking more information Strategies to reduce uncertainty 1) passive: look for clues (ex: a ring) 2) active: test other person 3) interactive: ask directly SOCIAL PENETRATION THEORY Theory of self-disclosure, “onion” metaphor – many layers Breadth and depth of self-disclosure Orientation, Exploratory Affective Exchange, Affective Exchange, Stable Exchange SOCIAL EXCHANGE THEORY Follows an economic model Weight costs vs rewards in relationship decision making RELATIONAL DIALECTICAL THEORY Conflicts often arise and need to be negotiated as the relationship develops (after honeymoon period) 1) integration – separation (level of dependence vs independence) 2) expression – nonexpression (when and how much to share and when to keep quiet) 3) stability – change (comfort vs boredom) NONVERBAL 1) kinetics – body language 2) proxemics – use of space 3) haptics – use of touch 4) vocalics – vocal quality 5) chronemics – use of time 6) artifacts – symbolic objects COMPUTER MEDIATED COMMUNICATIONS Lack of nonverbal cues – may lead to misunderstandings Anonymity – may lead to flaming DECEPTION THEORY Deliberate manipulation to lead others to false conclusions -both receiver and sender look for deception Leakage – can lie pretty well but not perfect at it, give away somehow Truth bias – harder when you are closer to the person, you’re not looking for clues but everyone else can see it III GROUP/ORGANIZATIONAL THEORIES GROUP FORMATION 1) Forming/orientation 2) Storming/conflict 3) Norming/emergence 4) Performing/reinforcement 5) Adjourning GROUPTHINK When a group makes faulty decisions because group pressures lead to a deterioration of mental efficiency, reality testing and moral judgment Ways to prevent 1) encourage criticism 2) assign devil’s advocate 3) invite outsider to monitor 4) leader refrains from stating preferences 5) set up subgroups NETWORK THEORY Formal communication channels Informal/emergent CLASSICAL ORGANIZATIONAL THEORY Organizations are hierarchical and rule driven BUREAUCRACY 1) authority – structure/titles 2) specialization 3) rules IV SOURCE FACTORS Source matters most if 1) receivers know little about the topic 2) low motivation 3) low ability Credibility Social Attractiveness Cognitive, fact Subjective, emotional Expertise, knowledge Similarity, physical attractiveness, likability Trustworthiness: truthful and forthcoming
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