Brittany Goetzel

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Ms. Brandi Bradley
ENC 2135

A Community to Belong to
A community is a group that is brought together for some specific reason. For
example, the community that is found in almost every medical setting, is the CNA
(Certified Nursing Assistant) community. CNA’s are generally the people that do
hands on medical practices while a nurse is watching. Some common practices they
will do, is taking patients’ vitals like height and weight or helping patients bathe,
dress, and eat if they can’t perform those everyday tasks on their own. Also CNA’s
will sometimes be able to draw blood. Communication is a key thing throughout the
whole CNA experience, from day one communication is used in classes like any
other classroom setting, it will also benefit in clinicals.
During clinicals, the CNA will be assigned with a nurse in a local hospital,
school, or other organization with a nursing staff teaching position. The nurse
instructor generally allows the CNA to work alongside them. Often times, the CNA
may be rotated or switched around to different clinical settings each semester to
get a feel of the different medical settings that are available. Communication is
required for an exceptional learning experience and for a well working community.
Genres, are the different ways of communication that can occur in any specific
community that is chosen. The specific genres that are focused on in this
community are: clinicals, registered nurse buddy systems, patient records,
rotational charts and the teamwork as a whole. The purpose of communication for
this community, is to make sure the students know what they are doing and to help
the doctor ultimately assess the patient when they make their rounds.

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The first form of communication in a CNA community is in clinicals. During a
clinical a CNA works under a Registered Nurse instructor doing whatever tasks he or
she assigns. The common communication noted here is visual and informative,
because the instructor is there to help show the CNA what to do and to critique the
tasks the students perform once they are at a high enough education to do so. The
audience would be the students for this type of communication, since the students
are the ones listening to the instructor; just like a normal school setting. During this
communication the rhetorical appeals that would be used are ethos and pathos.
Ethos is used, because the instructor is trying to receive credibility from teaching.
Pathos is also used, because the CNA is trying to emotionally appeal to the patient
by informing the patient what they will be doing. The mode of this communication is
audio and visual. For example, if the instructor shows the student what to do, then it
is visual, or if the instructor stands behind the student to critique the way he or she
performs the tasks, is then considered auditory learning. Although, the mode of
communication really all depends on the instructors teaching style. This type of
teaching is a face-to-face type of medium since all instructors are required to be in
that same room as the students for an effective teaching experience.
Another similar form of communication to a Registered Nurse instructor, is a
Registered Nurse buddy system. The Registered Nurse buddy system is useful once
the student is officially a CNA and can be either in a hospital or a clinical office
setting. Legally a CNA can only perform tasks when an actual Registered Nurse is in
the room with them. The main purpose for a Nurse to be in the room, is to help the
CNA if they need any assistance or to instruct the CNA if they forgot a step. This
type of communication is also informative and intended to inform or help the CNA’s
once again. When this communication occurs, the only rhetorical appeal that could

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possibly follow this, is ethos. Ethos resides in this communication, because it is
more or less informing the CNA what to do when they have a patient and to make
sure the CNA will do the same procedure every time. Having a Nurse to
communicate follows the audio mode of communication, because the Nurses
shouldn’t have to show the student how to do something, since the student has
already passed the exam and clinical portions of learning. The type of media being
used will also be face-to-face communication. This type of communication is very
effective, because then the student will understand how the work setting is
effective. Sometimes the relationship with the nurse that the CNA is paired with can
ultimately develop a friendship like any other work environment.
A third type of communication that happens in any medical environment is
patient records. Patient records are informative, because they tell the CNA
everything that medically happened in the patients past. Not only that, but the CNA
has to update all of the vital information at every visit to help the doctor have
proper diagnosis if any unusual occurrences happen in the appointment, and to
keep the medical records up to date. For example, an unusual occurrence could be
when a patient has lost too much weight in a short amount of time, which then can
help the doctor notice that something must be wrong with the patient’s lifestyle.
Patient records are intended to be used for only medical professionals, and legally
cannot be freely given out to anyone but the patient and whomever they gave
consent to see the results. The specific rhetorical appeal used during this form of
communication is logos. Logos fits best into this communication, because logos
derives from logic. Patient records are logical proof of previous illnesses, allergies,
visits and complete history of the patient or family that can help the doctor figure
out what the possible reason for the visit is. Patient records are also there to help

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different doctors that will come in the patient’s future. For example, if someone
ends up having cancer, then the current doctor can fax patient records over for a
much quicker first meeting appointment. A mode for this communication, is textbased since patient records are always documents. The media for this
communication, is either print or digital because some places; for example, the FSU
health center still uses paper for the patient to answer questions about their health
history. Although, a doctor that is commonly seen back at home will most likely
have all the records on computer, which then would be digital. Just like the previous
communication system’s this one is also very effective for the CNA community,
because without patient records appointments will always take longer than needed
which is not a good thing to have in a medical community, since nurses and doctors
see around 30 or more patients each day.
The fourth type of communication that is in a CNA community is a rotational
chart. Rotational charts are an informative genre, because they tell what Register
Nurses are with which CNA’s, and what rooms those pairs will be covering on the
floor. The audience for this communication is the RN and CNA employees for
whatever medical setting it is in. This communication would use logos rhetorical
appeal. Logos is incorporated, because the person that makes the rotational charts
strategically puts it together based off of who works well with whom and how much
the duo can take room wise before they are overwhelmed. The mode of
communication for rotational charts are visual, since it is an exact chart of the floor
that the CNA will be working on. This communication uses print as its media, since
the chart is printed before the beginning of each shift change, so the nurses know
where to go. Another possible form of media for rotational charts, could be digital
and by having the nursing duos check the computers out before their rounds. This is

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a very effective way of communication, so there is no chaos involved with who gets
what room and so no one is left out.
The final form of communication that will be brought up for the CNA
community, is teamwork in general. Teamwork’s purpose is to have everyone work
in unity and have effective communication go through people correctly. For
example, the CNA should report the vitals of the patient to the nurse, and the nurse
will record that and any symptoms, which then ultimately goes to the doctor.
Another example would be if the doctor orders scans or shots, then the he or she
will tell the nurse and the nurse will sometimes have the CNA do it if they are too
busy. The audience for teamwork is self-explanatory, which is just whoever is
working that shift. Ethos is the only rhetorical appeal, because it incorporates the
ethical idea of a perfect working environment by having top communication to
everyone. A mode for this kind of communication, is audio since the nurses will talk
to one another if they need help with anything or to even tell them what the other
person should be doing. Face to face is the primary media of communication, but it
also could be by digital if the working environment requires a pager to be on their
staff. This type of communication is very effective in order for everything in the
working environment to work smoothly.
In Bedford Book of Genres by Amy Braziller and Elizabeth Kleinfield, it says
that a key element to any type of genre is to be accurate, clear and direct (98). This
is exactly what genre conventions are for because the CNA’s then know what the
expectations are for each example of communication. For the first type of
communication, clinical’s, the expectation is that there is no goofing off, which can
be subverted by keeping the CNA’s busy at all times. Another expectation is that

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the CNA’s should come with questions if there is any, which is maintained by the
instructor always asking if anyone has any questions throughout the clinical. For the
second form of communication, registered nurse buddy systems, they expect
professionalism, which can be maintained by having them step in if the CNA gets
too off topic or isn’t performing their job. It’s okay to get off topic a little bit with the
patient, because one does need to develop a good relationship with the patient. The
third communication, patient records, are expected to be neat and organized, which
can be maintained by looking over the records before saving them into the system
for the doctor to see. The fourth form of communication, rotational charts, are
expected to be out by the start of every shift, which can be maintained by having
someone ask, if they aren’t out. The last and final form of communication,
teamwork, is expected to have no drama. The best way to subvert drama is by
leaving it at the door and especially by having no “serious” relationships occur in
the work environment.
If communication is not well in a medical setting, then everything could go
wrong. Most patients would not want to go back to a doctor appointment because of
how chaotic it would be. Also, many people would try to avoid going to that doctor
office or hospital that has the bad working environment from horrible
communication, which then would make people lose their jobs most likely since the
working environment would need to change or close down. There are so many
aspects needed for perfect communication in a CNA. “Effective communication skills
for a CNA should include active listening, documenting, observing and responding to
the needs of the residents especially when they have something to convey”
( It is crucial to have each and every one of these skills, so a
medical environment can function perfectly. If a CNA does acquire these types of

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skill sets, then they will show that there is a good working relationship throughout
the medical setting. Without each of these communication systems: teamwork,
rotation charts, patient records, Registered Nursing buddy system and clinicals,
then the community won’t be a community anymore and would just be considered a
zoo of individuals.

Works Cited
Marcus. CNA Training Classes. Campus Explorer. 20 May 2015. Web. 10 Jan. 2016.

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Braziller, Amy and Kleinfeld, Elizabeth. The Bedford Book of Genres. Boston:
Bedford, 2014. Print.