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Theories of communication

Theories of communication

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Published by rabirabi

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Published by: rabirabi on Apr 27, 2009
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04/09/2013

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Define various theories of communication in simple words, which theoryyou think is more preferable and why?
Answer:Electronic Theory
 One very influential theory is called the mathematical or electronic theory of communication.This idea emphasized the technical problems of transmitting a message from a sender to areceiver.It is based on, and uses the language of, electronics.The message begins with an
information source
, the mind of the sender (writer or speaker), who
encodes
a message into words and sentences. The message is
transmitted 
as a signal (marks on paper or sound waves) through a channel, where it may be distorted by
noise
(such as smudged typing or acoustical problems). As a last step, the receiver (listener or reader)
decodes
the message. Look at the following illustration of this theory.
MessageCommunicatorAudience
 As senderas receiver
 
The electronic theory is helpful because it introduces the ideas of senders and receiversand of possible interference. It emphasizes one important aspect of communication:accuracy.Its usefulness is limited, people are not machines. It may be possible to design perfectlyan accurate electronic communication system but not a human one. Emphasis onaccuracyignores many other important dimensions of the situation in which we communicate. Onemay express an idea very accurately, but other may think he does not have the right totalk, so we need to understand other theories too.
Social Environment Theory
Social environment theory is of the social and behavioralscientists. It says that we must consider the situation, the social context in which we willwork.When we work and communicate together, we all participate in a social situationWithin that situation, each agrees to assume certain roles – such as “compromiser,”“initiator,” “or “encourager” – based on our part in the activity.We each have a certain status prescribed officially, such as our job title.We need to understand the rules, or the “culture,” of the environment in order tocommunicate: both the official rules – such as company policies and practices – and thoseunwritten rules regarding to whom, how, and when, and for how long it is appropriate for 
 
us to communicate within a certain organization. Look at the following illustration of thistheory.MessageCommunicatorAudienceAs senderas receiver
 
Within a certain environment 
S
ocial environment is helpful because it adds the important dimension of the specificsocial situation. Too often, inexperienced business people neglect to take into accountrole status and rules when they communicate.A nicely tailored message may still fail to achieve its objective if you write to the wrong person at the wrong time.
Rhetorical Theory
 Third set of theorists add more dimensions to our understanding of the communication process: communication is not linear, but circular; not just sending amessage to be received, but producing a response; not static, but dynamic.Rhetorical theorists provide an important addition to a communication model for businesscommunicatorsMany people in business get so much absorbed in the accuracy of their message andappropriateness of the situation that they forget the third crucial variable, producing thedesired
response
form their audience. The importance of response in businesscommunication is illustrated in the following figure—which incorporates the ideas of accuracy (from the collective theory) and situation (from the social environment theory).This model is circular, not linear.MessageCommunicatorAudienceResponseIn fact, perhaps the most important difference between business communication and other forms of communication is this circular quality: your business communicationeffectiveness depends on the result you achieve. How can you achieve desired response?That’s what the rest of this course will be about. You will learn not only how to be morecorrect and accurate, and how to be more sensitive to the situation, but also how toidentify your audience’s needs in order to become a better communicator.We think that rhetorical theory of communication is more preferable because it adds moredimensions to our understanding in a communication process and it tells thatcommunication is not linear but circular; it is not just sending the message but producinga response. Communication is dynamic not static. A very important aspect that this theory
 
includes is the response of your communication i.e. feed back which is an importantfactor in communication.

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