SPC-1017 Study Guide - Midterm Guide: Expectancy Violations Theory, Paralanguage, Proxemics

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11 Jun 2015
General: This exam will consist of 50 multiple choice items derived from both the
material presented in your text and
in class discussions. The items from the text will be drawn from chapters 1-4 and
chapters 12-15.
Text Items:
Chapter 1: The Communication Process
Define strategic flexibility and explain where its power lies
Strategic flexibilityimportant aspect of jointly created messages; the ability to
change messages in ways that will increase your chance of obtaining the desired
o People are varied in their individual traits; using SF, you can adapt,
change, adjust, correct, or do whatever is needed to get the result you wish
o Expanding your communication repertoire to enable you to use the best
skill/behavior available for a particular situation
o Primary characteristic of successful people
o People of SF happier
Power of the SF is in its application; 6 steps of SF make this possible
o Anticipatethink about potential situations & requirements likely to arise
(key to this is forecasting)
o Assesstake stock of factors, elements, and conditions of situations
o Evaluatedetermine value & worth of the factors, elements and
conditions & how they bear on your own skills (accuracy)
o Selectselect from your available skills & behaviors likely to have
greatest impact (appropriateness)
o Apply—apply skills/behaviors you have selected (relevance)
o Reassess and reevaluate—feedback, or direct result; may result in
application of further skills (accurate, careful observation)
Define communication and explain the elements of communication
Communicationany process in which people, through the use of symbols,
verbally and/or nonverbally, consciously or not consciously, intentionally or
unintentionally, generate meaning (information, ideas, feelings, and perceptions)
within and across various contexts, cultures, channels, and media.
Elements of communication
o Sender-receivers—people are both sending and receiving at the same
time; in all situations sender-receivers share meaning; share language and
understanding of the situation
o Messagesmade up of the idea and feelings that sender-receivers want to
share; meaning is jointly created b/w sender and receiver; no message at
all if no common symbols or referents
Symbol—something that stands for something else
Verbal symbols—stand for particular things/ideas
Concrete symbols—symbol that represents an object (chair)
Abstract symbols—stand for ideas (home, hungry, hurt)
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Nonverbal symbols—ways we communicate w/o using words
(facial expressions, gestures, postures, vocal tones, appearance)
o Channelsconveyance of message; route traveled by a message; it is the
means a message uses to reach the sender-receivers (primary=sound and
o Noise—interference that keeps a message from being understood or
accurately interpreted. Occurs b/w the sender-reciever, and it comes in 3
forms (conceptual filters)
External noise—comes from the environment and keeps the
message from being heard or understood; does not always come
from sound (weather, bugs)
Internal noise—occurs in the minds of the sender-receivers when
their thoughts or feelings are focused on something other than the
communication; may also stem from beliefs or prejudices
Semantic noise—caused by people’s emotional reactions to words
(tune out speaker who uses profanity)
o Feedbackresponse of the receiver-senders to each other
Strategic flexibility
Vital to communication
Sensory acuitypaying attention to all elements in the
communication environment
o Settingthe environment in which the communication occurs
Explain the three principles of transactional communication
Participation is continuous and simultaneous
o Whether or not you are actually talking in a communication situation, you
are actively involved in sending and receiving messages
All communications have a past, present, and a future
o You respond to every situation from your own experiences, moods, and
All communicators play roles
o Roles—parts you play or ways you behave with others
o Defined by society and reflected by individual relationships, roles control
everything from word choice to body language; roles are constantly
Explain the types of communication
Intrapersonal communication—language use and/or thought that occurs within
you, the communicator
o Involves your active internal involvement in the symbolic processing or
o Become your own sender/receiver and provide feedback to yourself in an
ongoing internal process
o EX: daydreaming, talking to oneself, reading aloud
Interpersonalwhen you communicate on a one-to-one basis; usually in an
informal unstructured setting; occurs mostly b/w 2 people; uses all the elements of
the communication process; offers the greatest opportunity for feedback
Small-group—when a small number of people meet to solve a problem
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