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Introduction to Communication: Definition and Importance

Thompson Ewata
EU Ilara-Mokin, Ondo State, Nigeria

Introduction to Communication
Man has done nothing all his life but communicate. He communicates his feelings, ideas, opinions, impressions, fears, aspirations, joy, worries to other people around him one way or the other through words, action, gestures, signs, symbols etc. Communication helped man conquered his immediate and distance environments.

Intro Cont.
When man finds himself in the field of life, what kept him going was his ability to relate to other members of the human community. In relating with other members of the human community he interacted (exchange ideas, opinion etc) with them. He learnt to do things that had been done by others and helped others do what he did all these happened through communication

He was able to learn from others the fruits or food that was edible and those not good for human consumption, where and how to find food, shelter, protect himself against attack from other humans, animals and natural elements. All these was done or made possible through communicating with other humans and paying attention to the communication of others around him.

We can see that but for communication either directly, through interacting with others or indirectly; merely paying attention to others man would not have been where he is today. With communication, he has grown taller than other animals in the animal kingdom and the entire planet. What then is communication?

Communication Defined
We can view communication in different lights. That is what accounts for why there are different definitions of communication. i. Communication is the process of passing or sharing ideas, opinions, experiences, worries, joy and feelings from one person to another.

Communication Defined
ii. Communication is the process of exchanging information, usually through a system of symbols (Raman & Singh, 2006, p. 1) iii. Communication is the process of sharing ideas, information, and messages with others in a particular time and place (Lievrouw, 2007). iv. Communication is not just what we say or do: it is also what we hear and see.

Importance of Communication
We communicate to: o to inform and be informed o to persuade information that is used to change attitudes and/or behaviour o to entertain o to satisfy our physical, identity and social needs o to build a context of understanding

Importance Cont
o to keep people in the general picture o to get people involved with the organisation o for better relationships and understanding between the parties o helps in reducing conflicts whether in interpersonal or business communication o to control the behaviour of members of a society

1st Assignment
Without communication, man would not have survived on planet earth. Discuss. (Due 29/11/2013)