A First Look at Communication
A. To the author
B. To Communication Mosaics
II. There are many important reasons for studying communication.
A. By learning about communication theories and principles you can become a more skilled communicator.
B. By learning about communication theories and principles you can become more adept at making sense of what happens in your everyday life.
III. Communication is a foundation of many spheres of life.
A. Communication is a foundation in your personal life and identity.
1. How we see ourselves reflects the views of us that are communicated by others.
2. Healthy interactive communication influences our physical and psychological well-being.
B. Communication is a foundation of the personal relationships that you develop with others.
1. We connect with others by disclosing private information and solving problems together.
2. Small talk and everyday communication weaves intimates’ lives together.
3. Communication also plays a role in destructive relationship patterns, e.g. abuse and violence.
C. Communication is a foundation of your professional success.
1. Communication skills are important for success and advancement in our professional careers.
2. Technical careers also require good communication skills.
D. Communication is a foundation of civic life and a healthy society.
1. To participate in a democratic society we need to be able to listen, speak, and deliberate with others.
2. Communication skills help us to interact with people whose background is different from our own.
IV. Communication is a systemic process in which people interact with and through symbols to create and interpret meanings.
A. Communication is a process. It is ongoing and always changing.
B. Communication is systemic. It occurs within systems of interrelated and interacting parts.
C. Communication is symbolic. Symbols are arbitrary, ambiguous, abstract representations of other things.
D. Communication involves meanings. Humans bestow significance on phenomena.
1. Content level meanings are the literal meaning of messages.
2. Relationship level meanings are what is expressed about the relationship between communicators in messages they send and receive.
V. The study of communication opens doors to a wide array of careers.
A. Research, both academic and for media companies, is a career option for communication specialists.
B. Communication education at all levels is an exciting career for people who want to help others improve their communication skills.
C. Careers in mass communication range from script writing and directing to reporting.
D. The field of training and consulting welcomes individuals with strong backgrounds in communication.
E. Human relations and management is a career that places a high priority on communication knowledge and applications.
Content level of meaning
Relationship Level of Meaning