This outline can be a helpful study tool to assist you in seeing the order and sequence of the chapter and
the relationship of ideas. Use it to take notes as you read and/or to add concepts presented in lecture.
I. Human communication is the process of (creating meaning through symbolic interaction)
A. Communication is human; in this text we do not consider machine and animal
B. Communication is a continuous, transactional process.
C. Communication is symbolic (uses symbols that represent other things); it is arbitrary and
allows people to think or talk about the past, explain the present and speculate about the
II. Types of communication include intrapersonal, dyadic or interpersonal, small group, public, and
III.Communication satisfies physical, identity, social, (pleasure, affection, escape, relaxation and
control) and practical needs.
IV.The transactional model is more accurate than the linear model of communication.
A. The elements of a linear model (sender encodes message, receiver decodes, noise
(external, physiological and psychological), environment, channel—includes mediated
communication) are valid, but its one-way nature is not.
B. The transactional model more accurately portrays communication as a simultaneous,
fluid, relational process of decoding and encoding. The discernable response of a
receiver to a sender's message is called feedback.
V. A competent communicator both understands and demonstrates proficiency.
A. Communication competence isn't a single, ideal way of communicating; it is situational
and relational and can be learned. It is more accurate to talk about degrees or areas of
B. Competent communicators carefully choose and skillfully enact the most appropriate
behavior while demonstrating empathy, cognitive complexity, self-monitoring, and
commitment to the relationship.
C. Intercultural communication competence requires an understanding of differences within
a society (co-cultures) as well as motivation, tolerance for ambiguity, open-mindedness,
and knowledge and skill (mindfulness) when attempting to learn the rules of a specific
D. Competence in mediated communication presents new challenges due to a lack of
richness (of nonverbal cues), disinhibition, and permanence.
VI.Correcting these common misconceptions about communication leads to greater satisfaction.
A. Communication doesn't always require complete understanding; coordination may be
B. Communication is not always a good thing.