Communications Final Essay

2114 words - 9 pages

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Colorado Christian University

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Communication has many different definitions and many different theories. Griffin, Ledbetter, & Sparks (2015) note, “Communication is the relational process of creating and interpreting messages that elicit a response.” (p. 6). Everything that a person says to another individual is then interpreted, and then the other person responds based of how they understood what was said. There are several theories on interpersonal communication. According to Griffin Ledbetter, & Sparks (2015) a theory is, “A set of systematic, informed hunches about the way ...view middle of the document...

Griffin, Ledbetter, & Sparks (2015) noted:
Unlike most sociologists, Mead saw society as consisting of individual actors who make their own choices – society-in-the-making rather than society-by-previous-design. Yet these individuals align their actions with what others are doing to form education systems, health care systems, legal systems, economic systems, and all other societal institutions in which they take part.” (p. 60).
Judee Burgoon is credited with developing the Expectancy Violations Theory. This theory examines personal space and how others react to certain violations. Griffin, Ledbetter, & Sparks (2015) notes, “Burgoon defined personal space as the ‘invisible, variable volume of space surrounding an individual that defines that individual’s preferred distance from others.” (p. 82). The idea is that people will react to certain people based off of the distance, how they feel about the other person, and how they interpret unexpected behavior. Expectancy Violation Theory has three concepts. Griffin, Ledbetter, & Sparks (2015) say, “In order for us to appreciate the connection, we need to understand three core concepts of EVT: expectancy, violation valence, and communicator reward valence.” (p. 86). When someone expects a person to act a certain way that is expectancy, violation valence is how a person responds when someone does something unexpected. This response can be good or bad, depending what the violation was. Finally, communicator valence is deciding where to go from experience with the other person. Griffin, Ledbetter, & Sparks (2015) note, “But when the meaning of an action is unclear, EVT says that we interpret the violation in light of how violator can affect our lives.” (p. 88). Expectancy Violation Theory is important to interpersonal communication because it allows a person to evaluate a situation where their personal space may have been violated. If a person can understand why they react to another person in a certain way, then it allows for them to choose how to react.
The next theory that is important to interpersonal communication is the Social Judgment Theory. There are three zones in the Social Judgment Theory; they are the latitude of acceptance, rejection, and noncommitment. When a person has a latitude of acceptance they are willing to consider the ideas and opinions of other people, and may eventually make them their own opinions. When a person has latitude of rejection means that a person is probably going to reject whatever they are being told, and the person talking to them should be very careful how they approach the subject. Lastly, the latitude of noncommitment means that the person has no opinion on what is being said. Griffin, Ledbetter, & Sparks (2015) note, “Ego-involvement refers to how crucial an issue is in our lives.” (p. 178). If the issue is serious enough to the person, then it’s unlikely that their latitude of acceptance or rejection will change. When dealing with others...

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