Improving Communication / Edition 1

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This mainstream, skills-oriented text helps students become competent communication receivers as well as senders. The text emphasizes public speaking and interpersonal communication skills with minimal theory, and includes a full seven chapters on public speaking. Addressing contemporary issues such as gender, ethics, and intercultural communication, Improving Communication examines the challenges these issues present in various areas of interpersonal, small group, and public communication.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780395632062
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Company College Division
  • Publication date: 1/1/1999
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 414
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Table of Contents

I. Fundamentals

1. Communication--Background Concepts

Why Study Communication?

Communication Definitions and Conditions

Components in a Typical Communication Situation

2. Language--The Basis of Verbal Messages

Language Basics



Language and Thought

Communication Barriers in Language"Correct" Language

3. Nonverbal Behavior

Nonverbal Behavior--A Few Basics





Touching (Haptics)

Physical Appearance

Miscellaneous Others

Cultural Differences

A Practical Note

4. Developing Your Listening Skills

The Nature and Importance of Effective Listening

Developing Effective Listening Skills

Developing Critical Thinking and Listening Skills

Your Ethical Responsibilities as a Listener

II. Interpersonal and Small-Group Settings

5. The Self--Personal and Interpersonal Perceptions

Communication and Self--General Approaches

Personality, Preferences, and Styles

Emotional Maturity

Communication Anxiety

6. Relationships


Intimate Relationships--Phase I

Intimate Relationships--Phase II

Intimate Relationships--Phase III

Intimate Relationships--Phase IV

7. Interpersonal Communication Dilemmas

Recognizing Cultural Perspectives


Deception--An Indicator of Communicative Awkwardness

Assertiveness via Tactfulness

8. Improving Communication in Small Groups

TheAdvantages and Disadvantages of Group Problem Solving

Group Problem-Solving Techniques

Participating in Small Groups

Leadership in Small Groups

Guidelines for Formal Meetings

III. Public Settings

9. Principles of Public Communication

How Public Communication Relates to Other Types of Communication

The Benefits of Public Communication

Rhetoric and Public Communication

Public Communication and the Mass Media

Public Communication in Your Life

10. Message Preparation

Analyzing the Speaking Situation

Analyzing the Audience

Selecting and Focusing Your Topic

Determining Your Purpose

Acquiring Responsible Knowledge

11. Supporting Materials

Facts and Statistics

Definitions, Explanations, and Descriptions




Comparison, Contrast, and Analogy

Presentation Aids

Computer-Assisted Presentations

Ethical Considerations in Using Presentation Aids

Selecting and Using Supporting Materials

12. Organizing and Outlining Your Speech

The Importance of a Well-Organized Message

Developing the Body of Your Speech

Preparing an Introduction and Conclusion

Preparing a Formal Outline

Preparing a Key-Word Outline

13. Presenting Your Speech

What Makes an Effective Presentation?

The Language of Speeches

Methods of Presentation

Using Your Voice and body to Communicate Effectively

Practicing Your Presentation

Coping with Communication Apprehension

14. Informative Speaking

The Functions of Informative Speaking

Helping Your Audience Learn

Types of Informative Speeches

Informative Speech Designs

Sample Informative Speech, "Warming Our World and Chilling Our Future"

15. Persuasive Speaking

The Process of Persuasion

The Challenges of Persuasive Speaking

Good Reasons and Sound Reasoning

Avoiding Defective Persuasion

Types of Persuasive Speeches

Persuasive Speech Designs

Sample Persuasive Speech, "Reduce, Refuse, Reuse"


Appendix A--A Guide to Library and Internet Resources

Appendix B--Interviewing

Appendix C--Profiles of the 16 Myers-Briggs Types

Appendix D--Dealing with Public-Speaking Anxiety

Appendix E--Sample Speeches

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