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dyadic communication examples

dyadic communication examples


COMM 1025 Review Sheet for Exam #2

what are the 6 ways nonverbal cues relate to verbal messages?

Exam:  Monday, November 9

Format:  40 multiple choice, some will be true/false

Ch. 5:  Nonverbal Codes 

∙ Definition:  Nonverbal language has multiple codes (a language that means something  like facial expressions and gesturing); there is a continuous flow of nonverbal cues; they  are more natural and spontaneous; we usually do not think about them as we do them;  they aren't arbitrary like words are; they are culturally specific rules about space or body  language. Some examples of nonverbal cues are human actions (intentional or  unintentional) that affect interpretations within an interaction

∙ Types of messages conveyed in every encounter ­ How much you like the person, your  status, how responsive you are, your emotional expression

o All based on facial expression, eye contact, proximity, touching, volume of  speech, gesturing

what is Dyadic Communication?

∙ There are 6 ways nonverbal cues relate to verbal messages 

1. Repeat ­ reinforce the message (holding up 3 fingers if you are giving the person  3 minutes to do something)

2. Complement – complements the message (someone is moping and they are  speaking softly) Don't forget about the age old question of fau specimen exam

3. Contradict – undermine the verbal cues (child says they aren’t scared but they  are hiding behind their mom)

4. Substitute – replaces verbal cues (someone is grieving so you give them a hug  rather than tell them you’re sorry)

5. Accent / Emphasize – makes your verbal message even stronger (vocally  emphasizes certain words in an exciting story)

6. Regulate – regulating the verbal conversation (looking at your watch while  talking to someone indicates you need to go)

∙ Kinesics – the study of body movement; the basic code of body and movement; how do  we use our bodies to send messages; how do the use of our bodies affect the way we send messages

what are the 6 ways nonverbal cues relate to verbal messages?

If you want to learn more check out psy 107

o Emblems – gestures that have symbolic meaning (thumbs up means you did a  good job)

o Illustrators – shows what you’re talking about (I caught a fish THIS big *holds  up hands to demonstrate size*) 

o Affect displays – has to do with demeanor or emotion; your feelings; gestures  that display emotions (posture) Don't forget about the age old question of all of the following are primary functions of flowers except

o Regulators – gestures that try to regulate interaction (packing up at the end of  class)

o Adaptors – a way to release energy / adapt to the situation (tapping during test  taking; putting your hand to your ear if you can’t here someone talking)

o Facial expressions – partially innate and partially learned; smiling and frowning  is biological; we regulate or emotions based on culture (smiling when you receive a gift even when you don’t like it) If you want to learn more check out scarlett 1i1

o Paralinguistic – characteristics that define how something is said rather than  what is said; the study of sounds that accompany words; includes voice pitch,  filler words (uh / uhm / like), when we use silence in speaking We also discuss several other topics like the study of how psychological neural and endocrine processes

o Cronemics and time orientations – the study of time and how it affects human  behavior; we have:

 Biological time orientation (eg built in biological clocks)

 Cultural time orientation (words / time concepts differ across cultures  and languages)

 Psychological time orientation (how we ourselves experience time; are  we always late, are we planning for the future)

o Proxemics and territoriality – the study of how we use space and what space  means to us

 Territoriality – the need to create boundaries

∙ Public territory – territory we share with others

∙ Home territory – areas owned and controlled by individuals

∙ Body territories – our own personal space and we ourselves 

decide who gets close

 Spatial arrangement – the ways we arrange home and public territories  (how we set up our furniture; how kids are seated in a classroom; where 

you sit at a conference table); these arrangements define our roles and 

influence our comfort

Ch. 6:  Interpersonal Communication – communication between people ∙ Dyadic Communication

o More personal and immediate form of communication; direct; very spontaneous;  between two people so you know how to read / respond to social cues; it isn’t  rehearsed; it is informal; (two people conversing is dyadic communication but one person speaking in front of a crowd isn’t) 

o Developmental approach – those who believe that dyadic and interpersonal  communication is NOT the same thing; something special must occur to turn  ordinary, impersonal, dyadic interaction into interpersonal communication (eg:  dyadic communication can occur between two people emailing each other but it  isn’t face to face or “special” interpersonal communication); when the rules  governing the relationship, the amount of data communicators have about one  another, and the communicators’ level of knowledge change, THEN dyadic  becomes interpersonal  We also discuss several other topics like asu spa

∙ Rules and “ways of knowing” of how we communicate with each other 

o Cultural­level rules – are general and apply to all members of a particular  culture; we follow rules when we meet someone (like being polite and shaking  their hand, talking about the weather or light topics)

o Sociological­level rules – rules that are ted to group membership; when we  interact with people who belong to specific groups within our culture (like we talk about school and homework with kids in our class)

o Psychological level rules – when we interact with people we know quite well, we abandon sociological rules and use psychological rules; we make these rules our  self; we are free to break rules in close, personal relationships (using sarcasm  around your friends, we do goofy and personal things we wouldn’t do with  strangers) 

∙ Ways of, or approaches to, defining relationships

o Cognitive construct – characteristics or qualities we associate with particular  kinds of relationships (think of prototypes); we ask ourselves what does ‘Best  Friend” mean; (eg: looking at level of trust; amount of time spent with different  actions); 

o Mini­cultures – shared norms and meanings unique to a particular relationship;  (eg: inside jokes, ways of using words, code language) 

o Dialectic approaches ­ Collection of contradictory forces; we have an individual  identity and a relationship identity and we have internal conflict as to how much  of each we should maintain 

∙ Primary relational dialects:

∙ Autonomy / togetherness – friends and couples decide how 

independent they want to be 

∙ Expressive / protective – finding a balance between sharing 

personal information and keeping it a secret 

∙ Novelty / predictability – people in relationships fall into habits 

that can be predictable; here they must choose how predictable 

they want to be and how autonomous they want to be; keeping it 

same­old or making it new

∙ We resolve dialectic tensions through:

∙ Balance between the two 

∙ Dialectal emphasis – going with one extreme

∙ Cycle – shift over time 

∙ Segmentation – divide aspects of life 

∙ Interpersonal attraction filtering theory aka Duck’s filtering theory – everyone we  encounter is a potential friend but we filter people out; we use a series of filters to judge  how close to others we want to become; at each filter, some potential partners are  eliminated

o First test: sociological or incidental cues: proximity (how close they are to you /  in your social circle?); frequency of interaction (do you see them enough?) o Second test: Pre­interaction Cues: are they good­lookin? How is their nonverbal  behavior?

o Third test: interaction cues: social rewards, conversational management (do you  like the way they interact with you? Is it smooth and effortless or awkward?) o Fourth test: cognitive cues: is their attitude similar to yours? Are you compatible  and share the same values?

∙ Self­disclosure – when we revel information to others that they are unlikely to discover  on their own; when we voluntarily open up to them; you are unlikely to find out through  other means; it should be current (it is most explosive when the past event reveals  something in current time); it deals with more than facts and involves risk o Rules 

∙ Self disclosure is not appropriate in all relationships so it must match the  nature of your relationship

∙ Choose the right time and place for your disclosures

∙ Disclosures should be gradual and not sidden

∙ There’s a norm of reciprocity  ­ both sides should be comfortable to  disclose

∙ Consider the effect of the disclosure on the other person 

o Benefits

∙ Establishing deeper, trusting relationships; managing stress; perception  checking; increased self understanding 

o Responding to disclosures 

∙ Advising/evaluating – not the best response, not everyone wants advice,  most people want listening 

∙ Analyzing/interpreting – analyze the cause of the dilemma; offer insight  but it might be met with defensiveness

∙ Reassuring/supporting – offering sympathy but may cut the discussion  short and not help

∙ Questioning/probing – asking questions to find out more

∙ Paraphrasing/understanding) – one of the best; reflects what they say so they know you understand them

∙ Relational Patterns

o Role Relations – partners either show dominance and submissiveness (dominant  is one­up role; submissiveness is one down role); confirming and disconfirming  responses

∙ In a complimentary pattern, one partner takes the one up position and  the other takes the one down (parents and children usually have this sort of relationship)

∙ In a symmetrical pattern, both members fight for the one up position ∙ Spirals – one partner’s behavior serves to intensify the other’s

∙ Progressive spiral – partners behavior goes leads into increasing 

levels of involvement and satisfaction 

∙ Regressive spiral – partners misunderstanding leads to more 

misunderstanding and a damaging relationship

∙ Paradoxes – when couples fall into the habit of sending one another 

contradictory messages (I love you and I don’t mind if you go out with 

your friends but ill be lonely and miserable) 

∙ Double bind – a particularly strong and enduring paradoxical 

communication wherein the receiver is simultaneously given two 

opposing messages but is prohibited from resolving them (Parent 

tells child to give them a hug but then frowns in disgust when the 

kid comes closer)

Ch. 7:  Small Group 

∙ Groups – develop over time; collection of individuals who, as a result over interacting  with one another over time, become interdependent, developing shared patterns of  behavior and a collective identity; a collection of people develops into a group through  interactions; in a true group, any action by one affects all; members develop and share  stable and predictable norms, values and role structures; members experience a sense of  identity and psychological closeness

∙ Systems Theory – a set of interrelated elements that respond in a predictable manner and maintain a consistent nature of interactions over time 

o Interdependence – ripple effect; behavior of one effects all

o Synergy – the idea that groups are more effective than the best individuals within  them

∙ Negative synergy –if one part is failing, the rest can step up or the group  can fail

o Non summativity – the whole of the group is greater than the sum of the parts; a  group is not just parts added but rather a whole new “better” being; (eg in  basketball, you can have the 5 most athletic people but they might not work  together as a good team)

o Variables of input – resources, ideas, influences 

o Throughput – procedures (like decision making methods, roles, rules, consensus, leadership) that the group uses 

o Output – decisions, solutions, recommendations, productivity 

∙ Group problem solving 

o Standard agenda/reflective thinking – a rational process for solving problems; a six step guide to solving problems

∙ Problem Identification – clarify the problem; find difference between  current state of affairs and desired ones 

∙ Problem analysis – assessing the problem and factors of the problem;  scope, harm, causes 

∙ Criteria selection ­ decide on the characteristics of a valid solution prior  to discussing specific solutions; what are the standards for solution 

∙ Solution generation – brainstorming; generate options

∙ Solution evaluation and selection – group members use previously 

selected criteria to evaluate each solution

∙ Implementation – putting the solution into affect 

o Brainstorming – when group members are encouraged to generate as many ideas as they can as quickly as possible 

o Nominal group technique – combines the standard agenda, brainstorming, and  the Johnson’s methods for generating ideas; the group cuts interaction to a  minimum; members rank their favorite idea and it is chosen; eliminates potential  conflict; allows quieter members to be herd

∙ Group rolls

o Task rolls – focused on accomplishing specific goal; (solving a problem, making  a decision, creating a product); results in productivity; (eg: initiator, contributor,  orienter, recorder, opinion giver, devil’s advocate)

o Maintenance rolls – focused on maintaining positive social climate /  relationships among group members; results in cohesiveness; (eg: encourager,  harmonizer, follower, group observer, tension reliever)

o Negative / Dysfunctional roles – focused on personal goals that inhibit  achievement of group goals (clown, stagehog, blocker 

∙ Leadership – how do we select a leader? (trait, style, situational / adaptive, and  functional)

o Trait approach – chose a leader based on their personality or innate  characteristics; idea that people are born with these leadership traits

o Styles approach – it is not the personality of the leader but rather how he or she  acts; people can learn to run autocratic and democratic processes; leaders need to  adapt to the situation or their followers 

o Functional approach – leader is anyone that serves the group goal ∙ Truckman’s Group Development Model

o Forming – the initial stage where the group is forming; they are sizing each other  up and being polite 

o Storming ­ there was a little tension but now this primary tension becomes more  real tension; competition, conflict; vying for leadership positions; usually  disagreement

o Norming – the group settles into patter interaction; how we behave and how we  do things 

o Preforming – now the group gets on task 

o Adjourning ­ If the group by this point have become a true group (have taken on  roles, made relationships); there is a now coming apart stage; summing up;  talking it over; group identity is being made into the past

∙ Group think – when a group gets too confident and makes poor decisions; the desire for  harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision  making outcome; members try to minimize conflict and reach a consensus decision  without critical evaluation of alternative viewpoints, by actively suppressing dissenting  viewpoints, and by isolating themselves from outside influences; members believe they  can do no wrong; can occur when cohesion is too high and members are too similar o Symptoms

∙ Illusion of invulnerability – group loses all sense of reality

∙ Belief in the groups own mortality – the members believe their actions  and beliefs are more valuable than those of people outside the group 

∙ Shared stereotypes – members believe that anyone who opposes the  group is stupid or wrong 

∙ Collective rationalizations – members stick to an ill­advised course of  action even in the face of contrary information

∙ Self­censorship – individuals who doubt the group feel that they have to  censor themselves because they will be met by disapproval 

∙ Illusion of unanimity – a doubting member believes that everyone else  agrees with the group’s chosen action 

∙ Pressure on dissenters – if a dissenting member speaks up they are 

severely sanctioned

∙ Mind­guards – people who protect the leaders of the group from outside  and negative opinions / information 

o Ways to prevent groupthink

∙ Members can assign someone to be devil’s advocate; they can take 

criticisms seriously; shouldn’t brag; hold second­chance meeting to review the flaws of a decision; monitoring behavior

Ch. 8:  Organizational Communication 

∙ Definition ­ communication that takes place within an organization; how different  elements of an organization come together to determining how it functions; what makes an  organization is communication practices; exploring organizations through communication;  We need to understand things like gender, ideology, ethnicity, etc. to have good  organizational communication

∙ Systems Theory ­ characteristic of an organization;  there are different elements that are  independent from each other and they function differently than when they are together v  when they are not (parts of a car ­ useless when they are not together); this theory can apply to people and roles within an organization 

∙ Hierarchy – a system that is divided into orders and ranks; status and power are not  distributed equally

∙ Bureaucracy ­ a key concept in organizational communication; a clear chain of  command; the lines of authority; the structure of the organization would be very clear;  everyone has clear tasks; (there is an formal chart: CEO at the top, etc.) and organizational  communication flows through this chart; But not all organizations function in this "clear  cut" way!

∙ Structuration Theory ­ we are constantly creating and recreating social structures  through our interactions; says that organizational theory structures society; we create norms and rules of society and such based on our interactions; there is a reciprocal relationship  between organizational strictures and organizational communication

∙ Organizational Culture

o Defined ­ a system of shared assumptions, values, and beliefs, which governs how people behave in organizations. These shared values have a strong influence on the  people in the organization and dictate how they dress, act, and perform their jobs.

o Organizational rituals / rites ­ a public, dramatic set of planned activities that  consolidate various forms of the company's culture; exemplifies the organizational  culture and therefore reinforces it (CI, the Dundies)

∙ 6 different types of rites

1. Passage ­ celebrates new role (CI)

2. Degradation ­ strips away power (impeachment)

3. Enhancement ­ rewards (Dundies)

4. Renewal ­ improve functioning (corporate retreat)

5. Conflict resolution ­ reduce conflict (grievance procedures)

6. Integration ­ create common identity (end of semester party) 

o Organizational stories ­ help us make sense of organizational culture by  reflecting company values; narrative examples or anecdotes (GW snow days, law  students sued GW for lost time due to unnecessary weather closures, this  organizational story has a stigma about GW) 

o Organizational metaphor ­ linguistic expressions that allow us to experience one thing in terms of another; see something in terms of something else; (colonial  inauguration); embody aspects of organizational culture

∙ Information flow of organizations 

o Formal Structure – when information flows through a structured chain of  command officially recognized by the organization (worker goes to the manager  who sends it to their supervisor) 

o Informal structure – when information takes a more personal and less structured path (gossip in the lunchroom); “heard it on the grapevine;” more often face to  face; at least as accurate as formal channels

o Downward flow – when someone near the top of the organization sends a  message to someone near the bottom (instructions, appraisal, orientation) ∙ Problems: not enough information (inadequate info on how to do their  jobs); or information overload (with junk emails and memos); 

inappropriate channels; filtering through serial transmission; pervasive  climate of dominance and submission

∙ Fixes: target to proper audience; build in redundancy; use multiple  channels; encourage questions

o Upward flow – when a message travels from the bottom to the top (progress  reports, problems, suggestions)

∙ Problems: often neglected, no follow­up, distorted to avoid negative info ∙ Fixes: Ombudsman (watchdog!); follow up; encourage and reward  criticism 

o Horizontal flow ­ when communication occurs with people at the same level  (cross­department teams and meetings; problem­solving; info sharing)

∙ Problems: clash of interests and perspectives; jargon/vocabulary; 


∙ Fixes: Build cooperative climate; paraphrasing and clarifying 

∙ Network Analysis – a method of mapping informal communication patterns o The structures: loose coupling and tight coupling

∙ Loose coupling – autonomous units; when relations between subunits in  an organization is relatively weak; information flow is gradual 

∙ Tight Coupling ­ subunits within an organization that are closely 

connected and highly interdependent

o Roles

∙ Clique – a group of people who communicate more with each other than  they do with others in their organization; members of cliques may have  similar jobs or share a common status

∙ Liaison – someone who connects the two cliques without being a member  of either one; may help info spread between people who would not 

normally communicate

∙ Bridge – a member of a clique that has connections with another clique ∙ Isolate – someone who is outside the informal network; an isolate that has no links to any clique

COMM 1025 Review Sheet for Exam #2

Exam: Monday, November 9

Format: 40 multiple choice, some will be true/false

Ch. 5: Nonverbal Codes 

• Definition: Nonverbal language has multiple codes (a language that means something  like facial expressions and gesturing); there is a continuous flow of nonverbal cues; they  are more natural and spontaneous; we usually do not think about them as we do them;  they aren't arbitrary like words are; they are culturally specific rules about space or body  language. Some examples of nonverbal cues are human actions (intentional or  unintentional) that affect interpretations within an interaction

• Types of messages conveyed in every encounter - How much you like the person, your  status, how responsive you are, your emotional expression

o All based on facial expression, eye contact, proximity, touching, volume of  speech, gesturing

• There are 6 ways nonverbal cues relate to verbal messages  

1. Repeat - reinforce the message (holding up 3 fingers if you are giving the person  3 minutes to do something)

2. Complement – complements the message (someone is moping and they are  speaking softly)

3. Contradict – undermine the verbal cues (child says they aren’t scared but they  are hiding behind their mom)

4. Substitute – replaces verbal cues (someone is grieving so you give them a hug  rather than tell them you’re sorry)

5. Accent / Emphasize – makes your verbal message even stronger (vocally  emphasizes certain words in an exciting story)

6. Regulate – regulating the verbal conversation (looking at your watch while  talking to someone indicates you need to go)

• Kinesics – the study of body movement; the basic code of body and movement; how do  we use our bodies to send messages; how do the use of our bodies affect the way we send  messages

o Emblems – gestures that have symbolic meaning (thumbs up means you did a  good job)

o Illustrators – shows what you’re talking about (I caught a fish THIS big *holds  up hands to demonstrate size*)  

o Affect displays – has to do with demeanor or emotion; your feelings; gestures  that display emotions (posture)

o Regulators – gestures that try to regulate interaction (packing up at the end of  class)

o Adaptors – a way to release energy / adapt to the situation (tapping during test  taking; putting your hand to your ear if you can’t here someone talking)

o Facial expressions – partially innate and partially learned; smiling and frowning  is biological; we regulate or emotions based on culture (smiling when you receive  a gift even when you don’t like it)

o Paralinguistic – characteristics that define how something is said rather than  what is said; the study of sounds that accompany words; includes voice pitch,  filler words (uh / uhm / like), when we use silence in speaking

o Cronemics and time orientations – the study of time and how it affects human  behavior; we have:

???? Biological time orientation (eg built in biological clocks)

???? Cultural time orientation (words / time concepts differ across cultures and languages)

???? Psychological time orientation (how we ourselves experience time; are  we always late, are we planning for the future)

o Proxemics and territoriality – the study of how we use space and what space  means to us

???? Territoriality – the need to create boundaries

• Public territory – territory we share with others

• Home territory – areas owned and controlled by individuals

• Body territories – our own personal space and we ourselves  

decide who gets close

???? Spatial arrangement – the ways we arrange home and public territories  (how we set up our furniture; how kids are seated in a classroom; where  

you sit at a conference table); these arrangements define our roles and  

influence our comfort

Ch. 6: Interpersonal Communication – communication between people • Dyadic Communication

o More personal and immediate form of communication; direct; very spontaneous;  between two people so you know how to read / respond to social cues; it isn’t  rehearsed; it is informal; (two people conversing is dyadic communication but one  person speaking in front of a crowd isn’t)  

o Developmental approach – those who believe that dyadic and interpersonal  communication is NOT the same thing; something special must occur to turn  ordinary, impersonal, dyadic interaction into interpersonal communication (eg:  dyadic communication can occur between two people emailing each other but it  isn’t face to face or “special” interpersonal communication); when the rules  governing the relationship, the amount of data communicators have about one  another, and the communicators’ level of knowledge change, THEN dyadic  becomes interpersonal  

• Rules and “ways of knowing” of how we communicate with each other  o Cultural-level rules – are general and apply to all members of a particular  culture; we follow rules when we meet someone (like being polite and shaking  their hand, talking about the weather or light topics)

o Sociological-level rules – rules that are ted to group membership; when we  interact with people who belong to specific groups within our culture (like we talk  about school and homework with kids in our class)

o Psychological level rules – when we interact with people we know quite well, we  abandon sociological rules and use psychological rules; we make these rules our

self; we are free to break rules in close, personal relationships (using sarcasm  around your friends, we do goofy and personal things we wouldn’t do with  strangers)  

• Ways of, or approaches to, defining relationships

o Cognitive construct – characteristics or qualities we associate with particular  kinds of relationships (think of prototypes); we ask ourselves what does ‘Best  Friend” mean; (eg: looking at level of trust; amount of time spent with different  actions);  

o Mini-cultures – shared norms and meanings unique to a particular relationship;  (eg: inside jokes, ways of using words, code language)  

o Dialectic approaches - Collection of contradictory forces; we have an individual  identity and a relationship identity and we have internal conflict as to how much  of each we should maintain  

• Primary relational dialects:

• Autonomy / togetherness – friends and couples decide how  

independent they want to be  

• Expressive / protective – finding a balance between sharing  

personal information and keeping it a secret  

• Novelty / predictability – people in relationships fall into habits  

that can be predictable; here they must choose how predictable  

they want to be and how autonomous they want to be; keeping it  

same-old or making it new

• We resolve dialectic tensions through:

• Balance between the two  

• Dialectal emphasis – going with one extreme

• Cycle – shift over time  

• Segmentation – divide aspects of life  

• Interpersonal attraction filtering theory aka Duck’s filtering theory – everyone we  encounter is a potential friend but we filter people out; we use a series of filters to judge  how close to others we want to become; at each filter, some potential partners are  eliminated

o First test: sociological or incidental cues: proximity (how close they are to you /  in your social circle?); frequency of interaction (do you see them enough?) o Second test: Pre-interaction Cues: are they good-lookin? How is their nonverbal  behavior?

o Third test: interaction cues: social rewards, conversational management (do you  like the way they interact with you? Is it smooth and effortless or awkward?) o Fourth test: cognitive cues: is their attitude similar to yours? Are you compatible  and share the same values?

• Self-disclosure – when we revel information to others that they are unlikely to discover  on their own; when we voluntarily open up to them; you are unlikely to find out through  other means; it should be current (it is most explosive when the past event reveals  something in current time); it deals with more than facts and involves risk o Rules  

• Self disclosure is not appropriate in all relationships so it must match the  nature of your relationship

• Choose the right time and place for your disclosures

• Disclosures should be gradual and not sidden

• There’s a norm of reciprocity - both sides should be comfortable to  


• Consider the effect of the disclosure on the other person  

o Benefits

• Establishing deeper, trusting relationships; managing stress; perception  checking; increased self understanding  

o Responding to disclosures  

• Advising/evaluating – not the best response, not everyone wants advice,  most people want listening  

• Analyzing/interpreting – analyze the cause of the dilemma; offer insight  but it might be met with defensiveness

• Reassuring/supporting – offering sympathy but may cut the discussion  short and not help

• Questioning/probing – asking questions to find out more

• Paraphrasing/understanding) – one of the best; reflects what they say so  they know you understand them

• Relational Patterns

o Role Relations – partners either show dominance and submissiveness (dominant  is one-up role; submissiveness is one down role); confirming and disconfirming  responses

• In a complimentary pattern, one partner takes the one up position and  the other takes the one down (parents and children usually have this sort of  relationship)

• In a symmetrical pattern, both members fight for the one up position • Spirals – one partner’s behavior serves to intensify the other’s

• Progressive spiral – partners behavior goes leads into increasing  

levels of involvement and satisfaction  

• Regressive spiral – partners misunderstanding leads to more

misunderstanding and a damaging relationship

• Paradoxes – when couples fall into the habit of sending one another  

contradictory messages (I love you and I don’t mind if you go out with  

your friends but ill be lonely and miserable)  

• Double bind – a particularly strong and enduring paradoxical  

communication wherein the receiver is simultaneously given two  

opposing messages but is prohibited from resolving them (Parent  

tells child to give them a hug but then frowns in disgust when the  

kid comes closer)

Ch. 7: Small Group 

• Groups – develop over time; collection of individuals who, as a result over interacting  with one another over time, become interdependent, developing shared patterns of  behavior and a collective identity; a collection of people develops into a group through  interactions; in a true group, any action by one affects all; members develop and share

stable and predictable norms, values and role structures; members experience a sense of  identity and psychological closeness

• Systems Theory – a set of interrelated elements that respond in a predictable manner and  maintain a consistent nature of interactions over time  

o Interdependence – ripple effect; behavior of one effects all

o Synergy – the idea that groups are more effective than the best individuals within  them

• Negative synergy –if one part is failing, the rest can step up or the group  can fail

o Non summativity – the whole of the group is greater than the sum of the parts; a  group is not just parts added but rather a whole new “better” being; (eg in  basketball, you can have the 5 most athletic people but they might not work  together as a good team)

o Variables of input – resources, ideas, influences  

o Throughput – procedures (like decision making methods, roles, rules, consensus,  leadership) that the group uses  

o Output – decisions, solutions, recommendations, productivity  

• Group problem solving  

o Standard agenda/reflective thinking – a rational process for solving problems; a  six step guide to solving problems

• Problem Identification – clarify the problem; find difference between  current state of affairs and desired ones  

• Problem analysis – assessing the problem and factors of the problem;  scope, harm, causes  

• Criteria selection - decide on the characteristics of a valid solution prior  to discussing specific solutions; what are the standards for solution  

• Solution generation – brainstorming; generate options

• Solution evaluation and selection – group members use previously  selected criteria to evaluate each solution

• Implementation – putting the solution into affect  

o Brainstorming – when group members are encouraged to generate as many ideas  as they can as quickly as possible  

o Nominal group technique – combines the standard agenda, brainstorming, and  the Johnson’s methods for generating ideas; the group cuts interaction to a  minimum; members rank their favorite idea and it is chosen; eliminates potential  conflict; allows quieter members to be herd

• Group rolls

o Task rolls – focused on accomplishing specific goal; (solving a problem, making  a decision, creating a product); results in productivity; (eg: initiator, contributor,  orienter, recorder, opinion giver, devil’s advocate)

o Maintenance rolls – focused on maintaining positive social climate /  relationships among group members; results in cohesiveness; (eg: encourager,  harmonizer, follower, group observer, tension reliever)

o Negative / Dysfunctional roles – focused on personal goals that inhibit  achievement of group goals (clown, stagehog, blocker

• Leadership – how do we select a leader? (trait, style, situational / adaptive, and  functional)

o Trait approach – chose a leader based on their personality or innate  characteristics; idea that people are born with these leadership traits

o Styles approach – it is not the personality of the leader but rather how he or she  acts; people can learn to run autocratic and democratic processes; leaders need to  adapt to the situation or their followers  

o Functional approach – leader is anyone that serves the group goal • Truckman’s Group Development Model

o Forming – the initial stage where the group is forming; they are sizing each other  up and being polite  

o Storming - there was a little tension but now this primary tension becomes more  real tension; competition, conflict; vying for leadership positions; usually  disagreement

o Norming – the group settles into patter interaction; how we behave and how we  do things  

o Preforming – now the group gets on task  

o Adjourning - If the group by this point have become a true group (have taken on  roles, made relationships); there is a now coming apart stage; summing up;  talking it over; group identity is being made into the past

• Group think – when a group gets too confident and makes poor decisions; the desire for  harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision  making outcome; members try to minimize conflict and reach a consensus decision  without critical evaluation of alternative viewpoints, by actively suppressing dissenting  viewpoints, and by isolating themselves from outside influences; members believe they  can do no wrong; can occur when cohesion is too high and members are too similar o Symptoms

• Illusion of invulnerability – group loses all sense of reality

• Belief in the groups own mortality – the members believe their actions  and beliefs are more valuable than those of people outside the group  

• Shared stereotypes – members believe that anyone who opposes the  group is stupid or wrong  

• Collective rationalizations – members stick to an ill-advised course of  action even in the face of contrary information

• Self-censorship – individuals who doubt the group feel that they have to  censor themselves because they will be met by disapproval  

• Illusion of unanimity – a doubting member believes that everyone else  agrees with the group’s chosen action  

• Pressure on dissenters – if a dissenting member speaks up they are  severely sanctioned

• Mind-guards – people who protect the leaders of the group from outside  and negative opinions / information  

o Ways to prevent groupthink

• Members can assign someone to be devil’s advocate; they can take  criticisms seriously; shouldn’t brag; hold second-chance meeting to review  the flaws of a decision; monitoring behavior

Ch. 8: Organizational Communication 

• Definition - communication that takes place within an organization; how different  elements of an organization come together to determining how it functions; what makes an  organization is communication practices; exploring organizations through communication;  We need to understand things like gender, ideology, ethnicity, etc. to have good  organizational communication

• Systems Theory - characteristic of an organization; there are different elements that are  independent from each other and they function differently than when they are together v  when they are not (parts of a car - useless when they are not together); this theory can apply  to people and roles within an organization  

• Hierarchy – a system that is divided into orders and ranks; status and power are not  distributed equally

• Bureaucracy - a key concept in organizational communication; a clear chain of  command; the lines of authority; the structure of the organization would be very clear;  everyone has clear tasks; (there is an formal chart: CEO at the top, etc.) and organizational  communication flows through this chart; But not all organizations function in this "clear  cut" way!

• Structuration Theory - we are constantly creating and recreating social structures  through our interactions; says that organizational theory structures society; we create norms  and rules of society and such based on our interactions; there is a reciprocal relationship  between organizational strictures and organizational communication

• Organizational Culture

o Defined - a system of shared assumptions, values, and beliefs, which governs how  people behave in organizations. These shared values have a strong influence on the  people in the organization and dictate how they dress, act, and perform their jobs.

o Organizational rituals / rites - a public, dramatic set of planned activities that  consolidate various forms of the company's culture; exemplifies the organizational  culture and therefore reinforces it (CI, the Dundies)

• 6 different types of rites

1. Passage - celebrates new role (CI)

2. Degradation - strips away power (impeachment)

3. Enhancement - rewards (Dundies)

4. Renewal - improve functioning (corporate retreat)

5. Conflict resolution - reduce conflict (grievance procedures)

6. Integration - create common identity (end of semester party)  

o Organizational stories - help us make sense of organizational culture by  reflecting company values; narrative examples or anecdotes (GW snow days, law  students sued GW for lost time due to unnecessary weather closures, this  

organizational story has a stigma about GW)  

o Organizational metaphor - linguistic expressions that allow us to experience  one thing in terms of another; see something in terms of something else; (colonial  inauguration); embody aspects of organizational culture

• Information flow of organizations

o Formal Structure – when information flows through a structured chain of  command officially recognized by the organization (worker goes to the manager  who sends it to their supervisor)  

o Informal structure – when information takes a more personal and less structured  path (gossip in the lunchroom); “heard it on the grapevine;” more often face to  face; at least as accurate as formal channels

o Downward flow – when someone near the top of the organization sends a  message to someone near the bottom (instructions, appraisal, orientation) • Problems: not enough information (inadequate info on how to do their  jobs); or information overload (with junk emails and memos);  

inappropriate channels; filtering through serial transmission; pervasive  climate of dominance and submission

• Fixes: target to proper audience; build in redundancy; use multiple  channels; encourage questions

o Upward flow – when a message travels from the bottom to the top (progress  reports, problems, suggestions)

• Problems: often neglected, no follow-up, distorted to avoid negative info • Fixes: Ombudsman (watchdog!); follow up; encourage and reward  criticism  

o Horizontal flow - when communication occurs with people at the same level (cross-department teams and meetings; problem-solving; info sharing)

• Problems: clash of interests and perspectives; jargon/vocabulary;  


• Fixes: Build cooperative climate; paraphrasing and clarifying  

• Network Analysis – a method of mapping informal communication patterns o The structures: loose coupling and tight coupling

• Loose coupling – autonomous units; when relations between subunits in  an organization is relatively weak; information flow is gradual  

• Tight Coupling - subunits within an organization that are closely  

connected and highly interdependent

o Roles

• Clique – a group of people who communicate more with each other than  they do with others in their organization; members of cliques may have  similar jobs or share a common status

• Liaison – someone who connects the two cliques without being a member  of either one; may help info spread between people who would not  

normally communicate

• Bridge – a member of a clique that has connections with another clique • Isolate – someone who is outside the informal network; an isolate that has  no links to any clique

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