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Nature and Elements

of Communication
 Communication is a process of sharing
and conveying messages or information
from one person to another within and
across channels, contexts, media, and
cultures (McCornack, 2014).
Nature and
Elements  There is a wide variety of contexts and
of situations in which communication can be
Communication manifested; it can be a face-to-face
interaction, a phone conversation, a group
discussion, a meeting or interview, a
letter correspondence, a class recitation,
and many others.
1. Communication is a process.
2. Communication occurs between two or
more people (the speaker and the
Nature of
Communication 3. Communication can be expressed
through written or spoken words, actions
(nonverbal), or both spoken words and
nonverbal actions at the same time.
 Communication is divided into elements which help us better understand its
mechanics or process. These elements are the following:
1. Speaker – the source of information or message
2. Message – the information, ideas, or thoughts conveyed by the
speaker in words or in actions
3. Encoding – the process of converting the message into words,
actions, or other forms that the speaker understands
4. Channel – the medium or the means, such as personal or non-
personal, verbal or nonverbal, in which the encoded message is
Elements of conveyed
Communication 5. Decoding – the process of interpreting the encoded message of the
speaker by the receiver
6. Receiver – the recipient of the message, or someone who decodes
the message
7. Feedback – the reactions, responses, or information provided by the
8. Context – the environment where communication takes place
9. Barrier – the factors that affect the flow of communication
Elements of
 Shannon-Weaver Model
 Known as the mother of all communication models, the Shannon-Weaver
model (1949) depicts communication as a linear or one-way process
consisting of five elements: a source (producer of message); a transmitter
(encoder of message into signals); a channel (signals adapted for
transmission); a receiver (decoder of message from the signal); and a

 This model, however, has been criticized for missing one essential element
in the communication process: feedback. Without feedback, the speaker will
Models of not know whether the receiver understands the message or not.
Models of

As shown in Figure 2, this model is more interactive. There is a

collaborative exchange of messages between communicators with
the aim of understanding each other. It also shows that a barrier,
such as noise, may interfere with the flow of communication.
 Basically, there are five functions of communication. These are
control, social interaction, motivation, emotional expression, and
information dissemination.
1. CONTROL – Communication functions to control behavior.
2. SOCIAL INTERACTION – Communication allows individuals to
interact with others.
Functions of
3. MOTIVATION – Communication motivates or encourages people to
Communication live better.
4. EMOTIONAL EXPRESSION – Communication facilitates people’s
expression of their feelings and emotions.
5. INFORMATION DISSEMINATION – Communication functions to
convey information.
 In their pioneer book Effective Public Relations, Professors
Broom, Cutlip, and Center (2012) list the 7 Cs of Effective
Communication. This list is widely used today, especially in
public relations and advertising.
1. Completeness - Complete communication is essential to the
quality of the communication process in general. Hence,
communication should include everything that the receiver needs
Features of an to hear for him/ her to respond, react, or evaluate properly.
Effective 2. Conciseness - Conciseness does not mean keeping the message
Communication short, but making it direct or straight to the point. Insignificant or
redundant information should be eliminated from the
communication that will be sent to the recipient.
3. Consideration - To be effective, the speaker should always
consider relevant information about his/her receiver such as
mood, background, race, preference, education, status, and needs,
among others. By doing so, he/she can easily build rapport with
the audience.
4. Concreteness - Effective communication happens when the message
is concrete and supported by facts, figures, and real-life examples and
situations. In this case, the receiver is more connected to the message

5. Courtesy - The speaker shows courtesy in communication by

respecting the culture, values, and beliefs of his/her receivers. Being
Features of an courteous at all times creates a positive impact on the audience.
Effective 6. Clearness - Clearness in communication implies the use of simple
Communication and specific words to express ideas. It is also achieved when the speaker
focuses only on a single objective in his/her speech so as not to confuse
the audience.

7. Correctness - Correctness in grammar eliminates negative impact on

the audience and increases the credibility and effectiveness of the
 There are instances when miscommunication and misunderstanding occur
because of certain barriers. To become an effective communicator, you
should recognize these barriers that hinder the communication process. This
will enable you to control the situation, reset conditions, and start anew. The
table below presents some barriers to effective communication with
corresponding solutions.

Barriers to
 Verbal Communication refers to an interaction in which words
are used to relay a message. For effective and successful verbal
communication, use words to express ideas which can be easily
understood by the person you are talking to. Consider
appropriateness, brevity, clarity, ethics, and vividness when
engaging in this type of communication.
Verbal 1. Appropriateness - The language that you use should be appropriate
Communication to the environment or occasion (i.e., whether formal or informal).
2. Brevity - Speakers who often use simple yet precise and powerful
and Nonverbal words are found to be more credible. Try to achieve brevity by being
Communication more direct with your words. Avoid fillers and insubstantial
expressions which do not add to the message, such as “uh,” “you
know,”“I guess,” and others.
3. Clarity - The meanings of words, feelings, or ideas may be
interpreted differently by a listener; hence, it is essential for you to
clearly state your message and express your ideas and feelings.
4. Ethics -Words should be carefully chosen in consideration of
the gender, roles, ethnicity, preferences, and status of the person
Verbal or people you are talking to.
Communication 5. Vividness - Words that vividly or creatively describe things
and Nonverbal or feelings usually add color and spice to communication. Hence,
Communication you are encouraged to find ways to charm your audience through
the use of vivid words.
 Nonverbal communication refers to an interaction where behavior is used to
convey and represent meanings. All kinds of human responses that are not
expressed in words are classified as nonverbal communication. Examples of
nonverbal communication are stares, smiles, tone of voice, movements, manners
of walking, standing and sitting, appearance, style of attire, attitude towards time
and space, personality, gestures, and others.

 Mastery of nonverbal communication is important for several reasons:

1. It enhances and emphasizes the message of your speech, thus making it
more meaningful, truthful, and relevant.
2. It can communicate feelings, attitudes, and perceptions without you saying
Nonverbal a word.

communication 3. It can sustain the attention of listeners and keep them engaged in the
4. It gives the audience a preview to the type of speaker you are.
5. It makes you appear more dynamic and animated in your delivery.
6. It serves as a channel to release tension and nervousness.
7. It helps make your speech more dramatic.
8. It can build a connection with listeners.
9. It makes you a credible speaker.
10. It helps you vary your speaking style and avoid a monotonous delivery.