Theories of Communication

February 20, 2013

Students in Mrs. Garrelts' speech class have been researching models of communication.  Examining speaker and listener relationships has been a primary focus of the unit. 

The basic model of communication, which includes a sender, a receiver, and a message has been the basis for the unit.  After students learned the basic model they could adapt it to understand how it applies to all theories of communication.  

One student researched the Muted Group theory and connected how the theory, which explains why women may have fewer minutes of public speaking time, relates to the message portion of the basic model.  Another student connected the basic model to the Dramatism theory by explaining how the theories are similar yet the names change from sender to actor, receiver to audience, and message to lines.  Other models studied included Cultivation Theory, Spiral of Silence Theory, Divergent Thinking Theory, and others. 

The students have enjoyed learning and researching multiple theories of communication and applying it to their everyday lives and speaking patterns.  As a final assignment to the unit each student presented a speech about their theory to the class.  Each of these speeches were then analyzed by the audience members using the Rhetorical Theory originally created by Aristotle which examines the Ethos, Pathos, and Logos of the speaker.  Essentially, was the speaker Ethical, Emotional, and Logical. 

Soon the speech class students will use their knowledge of theories to broaden their speaking skills into more difficult presentations for their classmates.