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purposive communication

UNIT I. Communication Processes, Principles, and Ethics…………………………
Elements of Communication ………………………………………………….
Types of Communication ………………………………………………………
Principles of Communication ………………………………………………….
Ethical Communication ………………………………………………………..
UNIT 2. Communication and Globalization………………………………………….
UNIT 3. Local, Global, and Glocal Communication in Multicultural Settings….
UNIT 4. Varieties and Registers of Spoken and Written Language………………
Spoken Register…………………………………………………………………..
Written Register …………………………………………………………………..
British and American ……………………………………………………………
Other Varieties …………………………………………………………………...
Unit 5. The Receptive Skills …………………………………………………………….
Critical Reading …………………………………………………………………..
Critical Viewing …………………………………………………………………..
Media Literacy …………………………………………………………………..
Unit 6: Communication Aids and Strategies Using Tools of Technology ……….
Presentations as Modes of Communication ……………………………
Using Technology to Communicate ………………………………………….
Unit 7. Communication for Work Purposes…………………………………………….
Workplace Communication .....................................................…………….
Meetings and Minutes of Meetings ……………………………………………
Memorandums …………………………………………………………………….
Business Letters …………………………………………………………………….
Unit 8. Communication for Academic Purposes ……………………………………...
Academic Writing ………………………………………………………………….
References …………………………………………………………………………………..
COURSE TITLE: Purposive Communication
Purposive Communication is about writing, speaking, and presenting to different
audiences and for various purposes. (CMO 20 s2013)
Purposive Communication is a three-unit course that develops students‘
communicative competence and enhances their cultural and intercultural awareness
through multimodal tasks that provide them opportunities for communicating
effectively and appropriately to a multicultural audience in a local and global context.
It equips students with tools for critical evaluation of a variety of texts and focuses on
the power of language and the impact of images to emphasize the importance of
conveying messages responsibly. The knowledge, skills and insights that students gain
from this course may be used in their academic endeavors, their chosen disciplines,
and their future careers as they compose and produce relevant oral, written, audiovisual and/or web-based output for various purposes.
Learning Competencies:
1. Describe the nature, elements, and functions of verbal and non-verbal
communication in various and multicultural contexts
2. Explain how cultural and global issues affect communication
3. Determine culturally appropriate terms, expression, and images
4. Evaluate multimodal texts critically to enhance receptive (listening, reading,
viewing) skills
5. Summarize the principles of academic text structure
6. Convey messages through oral, audio-visual, and/or web based
presentations for different target audiences in local and global settings using
appropriate registers
7. Create clear, coherent, and effective communication materials
8. Present ideas persuasively using appropriate language registers, tone, facial
expressions and gestures
9. Write and present academic papers using appropriate tone, style,
conventions, and reference styles
10. Adopt cultural and intercultural awareness and sensitivity in communication
of ideas
11. Appreciate the differences of the varieties of spoken and written language
12. Adopt awareness of audience and context in presenting ideas
13. Appreciate the impact of communication on society and the world
Course Requirements:
Assessment Tasks
Advocacy campaign on a topic related to their field of specialization
Course Content
First Grading Period
Unit 1:Communication
Processes, Principles, and
Unit 2:Communication and
Unit 3:Local, Global and
Glocal Communication in
Multicultural Settings
Midterm Period
Unit 4: Varieties and
Registers of Spoken and
Written Language
Unit 5: The Receptive Skills
Final Period
Unit 7: Communication
for Work Purposes
Unit 8: Communication
for Academic Purposes
Unit 6: Communication Aids
and Strategies Using Tools
of Technology
Study Guide
Time Frame
Skill Assessment
Due date
First Grading Period
Unit 1:Communication
Processes, Principles, and
Assessment 1- 5
September 4
September 7-18
Unit 2:Communication
and Globalization
Assessment 1- 5
September 18
September 21October 2
Unit 3:Local, Global and
Glocal Communication in
Multicultural Settings
Assessment 1-2
September 28
October 5-16
Midterm Period
Unit 4: Varieties and
Registers of Spoken and
Written Language
Assessment 1-4
October 16
October 19-30
Unit 5: The Receptive Skills
Assessment 1-10
October 30
August 24-September 4
November 2-13
Unit 6: Communication
Aids and Strategies Using
Tools of Technology
November 16December 4
Final Period
Unit 7: Communication for
Work Purposes
December 7-18
Unit 8: Communication for
Academic Purposes
Assessment 1-2
Assessment 1-6
Assessment 1-3
Advocacy project
November 9
December 4
December 18
At the end of the unit, you are expected to:
describe the core principles of communication;
identify guidelines for improving effectiveness as a communicator;
differentiate ethical from unethical communication;
discuss the types of communication; and
apply communication principles in various contexts.
Lesson1: Elements of Communication
Communication is an indispensable part of our daily lives, and so is language.
We engage in communication activities every day, but the kind of language or register
we use depends on the context or domain we find ourselves in. As college students,
you must be prepared to face any situation that necessitates the application of your
communication skills. You may be asked to report in class, deliver an informative
speech, prepare a business letter, conduct a seminar, and do many other tasks that
may be assigned to you, which will eventually help you in the field of work or
occupation after college life.
Communication is a systemic process in which people interact with and through
symbols to create and interpret meanings (Wood, 2017). Communication is a process,
which means that it is ongoing and dynamic. Communication takes place within
systems. A system consists of interrelated parts that affect one another. Because
systems are organized wholes, they are more than simple combinations of parts. As
families, groups, organizations, and societies evolve, they discard or adapt old patterns,
generate new patterns, lose some members and gain new members.
Communication is also affected by the larger systems within which it takes place.
For example, different cultures have distinct understandings of appropriate verbal and
nonverbal behaviors. Many Asian cultures place a high value on saving face, so Asians
try not to cause personal embarrassment to others by disagreeing overtly. It is
inappropriate to perceive Asian cultures as passive if they don‘t assert themselves in the
ways that many Westerners do. Arab cultures consider it normal for people to be nearer
to one another when talking than most Westerners find comfortable, and in Bulgaria,
head nods mean ―no‖ rather than ―yes‖. Different regions from the same country may
also have different ways. Even within a single region, there are differences based on
ethnicity, religion, gender, and other factors. Therefore, to interpret communication, we
have to consider the systems in which it takes place.
There are elements in the communication process. Two are the major parties in a
communication – sender and receiver. The next two represent the major representation
tools – message and media. Four represent major communication functions –
encoding, decoding, response, and feedback. The last element in the system is noise
(random and completing that may interfere with the intended communication). The
model emphasizes the key factors in effective communication. Senders must know
what audiences they want to reach and what responses they want to get. They must
encode their messages so the target audience can decode them. They must transmit
the message through media that reach the target audience and develop feedback
channels to monitor the responses. The more the sender‘s field of experience overlaps
that of the receiver, the more effective the message is likely to be. Selective attention,
distortion, and retention processes may be operating during communication. These
elements are illustrated in Figure 1.
Figure 1. Elements in the Communication Process
Source: Kotler, P. & Keller, K. L. (2009). Marketing Management. 13th Edition.
London: Pearson Prentice-Hall, p. 514.
Gamble and Gamble (2010) enumerate the components of communication picturing
the communication model.
Obviously, human communication involves people. Interpersonal, small-group,
and public communication encounters take place between and among all types of
senders (persons who encode messages) and receivers (persons who decode
messages). Senders and receivers, respectively, are individuals who give out and take
in messages. Although it is easy to picture a communication experience beginning with
a sender and ending with a receiver, it is important to understand that during
communication the role of sender does not belong exclusively to one person and the
role of receiver to another. Instead, the processes of sending and receiving are
constantly being reversed.
During every communication encounter, we all send and receive both verbal
and nonverbal messages. What you talk about, the words you use to express your
thoughts and feelings, the sounds you make, the way you sit and gesture, your facial
expressions, and perhaps even your touch or your smell all communicate information. In
effect, a message is the content of a communicative act. Some messages we send are
private (a kiss accompanied by "I love you‖); others are public and may be directed at
hundreds or thousands of people. We send some messages purposefully ("I want you to
realize ...") and others accidentally ("I had no idea you were watching ... or 'lurking'").
Everything a sender or receiver does or says is a potential message as long as someone
is there to interpret the behavior. When you smile, frown, shout, whisper, or turn away,
you are communicating, and your communication is having some effect.
Channels are the media we use to carry messages. We can classify channels
according to (1) which of our senses carries or receives the message, (2) whether the
message is being delivered verbally, nonverbally, or both, and (3) the primary means of
communication we use to deliver the message, that is, whether we use face-to-face
interaction, computer-mediated communication including e-mail and instant
messaging, telephone communication and text messaging, or a mass medium such as
television or film. Thus, we are multichannel communicators. Let's see how this works.
We receive sound messages (we hear noises from the street), sight messages (we
see how someone looks), taste messages (we enjoy the flavor of a particular food),
smell messages (we smell the cologne a friend is wearing), and touch messages (we
feel the roughness of a fabric). Which channel are you most attuned to? Why? To what
extent do you rely on one or more channels while excluding or ignoring others?
Effective communicators are adept at switching channels. They recognize that
communication is a multichannel experience.
In an organization these channels of communication may be used:
Face-to-Face or Personal Communication
Face-to-face or personal communication is one of the richest channels of
communication that can be used within an organization. Physical presence, the tone
of the speaker's voice and facial expressions help recipients of a message interpret that
message as the speaker intends. This is the best channel to use for complex or
emotionally charged messages, because it allows for interaction between speaker and
recipients to clarify ambiguity. A speaker can evaluate whether an audience has
received his message as intended and ask or answer follow-up questions.
Broadcast Media Communications
TV, radio and loud speakers all fall within the broadcast media communication
channel. These types of media should be used when addressing a mass audience.
Businesses seeking to notify customers of a new product may advertise or do
promotions using a broadcast channel. Similarly, a CEO may do a global company
address by having a television feed broadcast across global sites. When a message
intended for a mass audience can be enhanced by being presented in a visual or
auditory format, a broadcast channel should be used.
Mobile Communications Channels
A mobile communication channel should be used when a private or more
complex message needs to be relayed to an individual or small group. A mobile
channel allows for an interactive exchange and gives the recipient the added benefit
of interpreting the speaker's tone along with the message. Some within an organization
may opt to use this channel versus a face-to-face channel to save on the time and
effort it would take to coordinate a face-to-face meeting.
Electronic Communications Channels
Electronic communication channels encompass email, Internet, intranet and
social media platforms. This channel can be used for one-on-one, group or mass
communication. It is a less personal method of communication but more efficient.
When using this channel, care must be taken to craft messages with clarity and to
avoid the use of sarcasm and innuendo unless the message specifically calls for it.
Written Methods of Communication
Written communication should be used when a message that does not require
interaction needs to be communicated to an employee or group. Policies, letters,
memos, manuals, notices and announcements are all messages that work well for this
channel. Recipients may follow up through an electronic or face-to-face channel if
questions arise about a written message.
In the context of communication, noise is anything that interferes with or distorts
our ability to send or receive messages. Although we are accustomed to thinking of
noise as a particular sound or group of sounds, the perceptive communicator realizes
that noise can have both internal and external causes. Internal noise is attributed to the
psychological makeup, intellectual ability, or physical condition of the communicators.
External noise is attributed to the environment. Thus, noise includes distractions such as a
loud siren, a disturbing odor, and a hot room; personal factors such as prejudices,
daydreaming, and feelings of inadequacy; and semantic factors such as uncertainty
about what another person's words are supposed to mean.
Communication always takes place in a context, or setting. Sometimes a context
is so natural that we hardly notice it. At other times, however, the context makes such
an impression on us that it exerts considerable control over our behavior. Consider the
extent to which your present environment influences the way you act toward others or
determines the nature of the communication encounters you share with them. Consider
as well the extent to which certain environments might cause you to alter your posture,
manner of speaking, attire, or means of interacting. Take into account the fact that
sometimes conditions of place and time—that is, context-can affect our
communications without our consciously realizing it.
Whenever we communicate with one or more persons, we receive information in
return. The verbal and nonverbal cues that we perceive in reaction to our
communication function as feedback. Feedback tells us how we are coming across. A
smile, a frown, a chuckle, a sarcastic remark, a muttered thought, or simply silence in
response to something we did or said can cause us to change, continue, or end a
transaction. Feedback that encourages us to continue behaving as we are is positive
feedback; it enhances whatever behavior is in progress. In contrast, negative feedback
extinguishes a behavior; it serves a corrective rather than a reinforcing function. Thus,
negative feedback can help eliminate unwanted, ineffective behaviors. Note that the
terms positive and negative should not be interpreted as "good" and "bad"; these terms
simply reflect the way the responses affect behavior.
Both positive and negative feedback can emanate from internal or external
sources. Internal feedback is feedback you give yourself as you monitor your own
behavior or performance during a transaction. External feedback is feedback from
others who are involved in the communication event. To be an effective
communicator, you must be sensitive to both types of feedback. You must pay
attention to your own reactions as well as the reactions of others.
As people communicate, they are changed in some way by the interaction,
which in turn influences what follows. In other words, communication has an effect and
can be viewed as an exchange of influences.
An effect can be emotional, physical, cognitive, or any combination of the
three. An interpersonal, small-group, or public communication contact can elicit
feelings of joy, anger, or sadness (emotional); communication can cause you to fight,
argue, become apathetic, or evade an issue (physical); or it can lead to new insights,
increased knowledge, the formulation or reconsideration of opinions, silence, or
confusion (cognitive). The result of a communication encounter can also be any
combination of the three effects just mentioned. Since effects are not always visible or
immediately observable, there is obviously more to a communication reaction than
meets the eye, or the ear.
Functions of Communication
Understanding and Insight
One key function of communication is self-other understanding: insight into
ourselves and others. When you get to know another person, you also get to know
yourself; and when you get to know yourself, you learn how others affect you. We
depend on communication to develop self-awareness.
Meaningful Relationships
Communication offers each of us the chance to satisfy what psychologist William
Schutz calls our ―needs for inclusion, control, and affection.‖ The need for inclusion is our
need to be with others, our need for social contact. We like to feel that others accept
and value us, and we want to feel like a full partner in a relationship. The need for
control is our need to feel that we are capable and responsible, that we are able to
deal with and manage our environment. We also like to feel that we can influence
others. The need for affection is our need to express and receive love. Since
communication allows each of these needs to be met, we are less likely to feel
unwanted, unloved, or incapable if we are able to communicate meaningfully with
Influence and Persuasion
During interpersonal, small group, public, mediated, and online communication,
people have ample opportunities to influence each other subtly or overtly. We spend
much time trying to persuade one another to think as we think, do what we do, like
what we like. Sometimes our efforts meet with success, and sometimes they do not. In
any case, our experiences with persuasion afford each of us the chance to influence
others so that we may try to realize our own goals.
Career Development
There is a positive relationship between the ability to communicate and career
success. Employers seek to hire people who know how to make communication work. If
you develop the abilities to speak so that others listen, listen when others speak,
critically evaluate what you read and hear, adapt to differences in cultural
perspectives, handle conflicts and solve problems, and make sound decisions, then you
will exhibit skills valued by employers.
Questions for Discussion
How does communication take place?
In what ways does your communication meet your relational needs?
Which channel of communication conveys messages more accurately?
What positive and negative feedback have you received?
Suggest the best communication channels for the following messages. Assume that all
channels shown are available. Write your reason for your choice.
1. As an event planner, you have been engaged to research the sites for a
business conference. What is the best channel for conveying your findings?
2. You want to persuade your manager to change your work schedule.
3. As a sales manager, you want to know which of your sales reps in the field are
available immediately for a quick teleconference meeting.
You need to know whether Amanda in Reprographics can produce a rush job
for you in two days.
Your firm must respond to a notice from the Internal Revenue Service
announcing that the company owes a penalty because it underreported its
income in the previous fiscal year.
Watch the video on ‗Communication in the 21 st Century: Is it What You Say, Not How
You say It?‘ by Vivian Ta from this link
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laDnZ_FWyhM and observe the talk considering
the types of communication and elements of communication shown in the video.
Elements of Communication
Type of Communication
Lesson2: Types of Communication
Communication comprises five basic types: intrapersonal, interpersonal, small
group, public, and mass. These types differ primarily with respect to the size of the
audience, but also call for different communication skills.
Intrapersonal Communication is the communication you have with yourself. When you
mentally remind yourself to do something, or rehearse an upcoming conversation in
your mind, you are engaging in intrapersonal communication.
Interpersonal Communication is communication that occurs between two people in
the context of their ongoing relationship. When you exchange instant messages with a
friend, talk on the phone with a relative, or visit face-to-face with your supervisor, you
are engaging in interpersonal communication.
Small Group Communication
Almost all of us interact in small groups of people, such as sports teams, Bible study
groups, organizational departments, and teams of students working on a class project.
When we communicate with groups of about 3 to 20 people, we are engaging in small
group communication.
Public Communication occurs when we speak or write to an audience that is larger
than a small group.
Mass communication is communication to a large audience that is transmitted by
Verbal Communication
Verbal communication takes place over the phone or in person. The medium of the
message is oral.
Storytelling has been shown to be an effective form of verbal communication; it serves
an important organizational function by helping to construct common meanings for
individuals within the organization. Stories can help clarify key values and help
demonstrate how things are done within an organization, and story frequency, strength,
and tone are related to higher organizational commitment (McCarthy, 2008).
Crucial Conversations
While the process may be the same, high-stakes communications require more
planning, reflection, and skill than normal day-to-day interactions at work. Examples of
high-stakes communication events include asking for a raise or presenting a business
plan to a venture capitalist. In addition to these events, there are also many times in our
professional lives when we have crucial conversations—discussions where not only the
stakes are high but also where opinions vary and emotions run strong (Patterson, et. al.,
2002). One of the most consistent recommendations from communications experts is to
work toward using ―and‖ instead of ―but‖ as you communicate under these
circumstances. In addition, be aware of your communication style and practice
flexibility; it is under stressful situations that communication styles can become the most
Written Communication
In contrast to verbal communications, written communications are printed
messages. Examples of written communications include memos, proposals, e-mails,
letters, training manuals, and operating policies. They may be printed on paper,
handwritten, or appear on the screen. Normally, a verbal communication takes place
in real time. Written communication, by contrast, can be constructed over a longer
period of time. Written communication is often asynchronous (occurring at different
times). That is, the Sender can write a Message that the Receiver can read at any time,
unlike a conversation that is carried on in real time. A written communication can also
be read by many people (such as all employees in a department or all customers). It‘s
a ―one-to-many‖ communication, as opposed to a one-to-one verbal conversation.
There are exceptions, of course: a voicemail is an oral message that is asynchronous.
Conference calls and speeches are oral one-to-many communications, and e-mails
may have only one recipient or many.
Most jobs involve some degree of writing. According to the National Commission
on Writing, 67% of salaried employees in large American companies and professional
state employees have some writing responsibility. Half of responding companies
reported that they take writing into consideration when hiring professional employees,
and 91% always take writing into account when hiring (for any position, not just
professional-level ones) (Flink, 2007).
Luckily, it is possible to learn to write clearly. Here are some tips on writing well.
Thomas Jefferson summed up the rules of writing well with this idea ―Don‘t use two
words when one will do.‖ One of the oldest myths in business is that writing more will
make us sound more important; in fact, the opposite is true. Leaders who can
communicate simply and clearly, project a stronger image than those who write a lot
but say nothing.
Nonverbal Communication
What you say is a vital part of any communication. But what you don’t say can
be even more important. Research also shows that 55% of in-person communication
comes from nonverbal cues like facial expressions, body stance, and tone of voice.
According to one study, only 7% of a Receiver‘s comprehension of a Message is based
on the Sender‘s actual words; 38% is based on paralanguage (the tone, pace, and
volume of speech), and 55% is based on nonverbal cues (body language) (Mehrabian,
Research shows that nonverbal cues can also affect whether you get a job offer.
Judges examining videotapes of actual applicants were able to assess the social skills
of job candidates with the sound turned off. They watched the rate of gesturing, time
spent talking, and formality of dress to determine which candidates would be the most
successful socially on the job (Gifford, et. al., 1985). For this reason, it is important to
consider how we appear in business as well as what we say. The muscles of our faces
convey our emotions. We can send a silent message without saying a word. A change
in facial expression can change our emotional state. Before an interview, for example, if
we focus on feeling confident, our face will convey that confidence to an interviewer.
Adopting a smile (even if we‘re feeling stressed) can reduce the body‘s stress levels.
To be effective communicators, we need to align our body language,
appearance, and tone with the words we‘re trying to convey. Research shows that
when individuals are lying, they are more likely to blink more frequently, shift their
weight, and shrug (Siegman, 1985).
Another element of nonverbal communication is tone. A different tone can
change the perceived meaning of a message demonstrates how clearly this can be
true, whether in verbal or written communication. If we simply read these words without
the added emphasis, we would be left to wonder, but the emphasis shows us how the
tone conveys a great deal of information. Now you can see how changing one‘s tone
of voice or writing can incite or defuse a misunderstanding.
Aspects of Nonverbal Communication
Kinesics refers to the study of hand, arm, body, eye contact, and face
movements. For example, in some places, eye contact is encouraged because it is a
sign of paying attention, sincerity or of interest. In other environments, eye contact is
discouraged, as it is a sign of aggression. In india, head wobble can mean yes, no, or I
don‘t know. Further, there also are environments where touching of any kind is strictly
prohibited especially between sexes.
Haptics looks at touch as a way of communication. Touch is necessary for
human social development, and it can be welcoming, threatening, or persuasive. There
are several types of touch, including functional-professional, social-polite, friendshipwarmth, and love-intimacy touch (Hans& Hans, 2015).
Proxemics looks at how people use personal space or their personal space
requirements. Standing at least one foot away from other people during conversations
may indicate politeness, but in other cultures, it is common to stand or sit right next to
each other during a conversation.
Scholars have identified four zones for US Americans, which are public, social,
personal, and intimate distance. Intimate distance (0 to 1 ½ feet) is reserved for
members of the family; personal distance (1 ½ to 4 feet) is for talking with friends
privately; social distance (4 to 12 feet) is for acquaintances; public distance (12 feet
and over) is for use in the classroom and for speeches before groups Guffey(1997).
Table 1. Don‘t Use That Tone with Me!
Placement of the emphasis
What it means
I did not tell John you were late. Someone else told John you were late.
I did not tell John you were late.
This did not happen.
I did not tell John you were late. I may have implied it.
I did not tell John you were late.
But maybe I told Sharon and José.
I did not tell John you were late. I was talking about someone else.
I did not tell John you were late.
I told him you still are late.
I did not tell John you were late.
I told him you were attending another meeting.
Changing your tone can dramatically change your meaning.
Source: Based on ideas in Kiely, M. (1993, October). When ―no‖ means ―yes.‖ Marketing,
Here are a few examples of nonverbal cues that can support or detract from a sender‘s
Body Language
A simple rule of thumb is that simplicity, directness, and warmth convey sincerity.
And sincerity is key to effective communication. A firm handshake, given with a warm,
dry hand, is a great way to establish trust. A weak, clammy handshake conveys a lack
of trustworthiness. Gnawing one‘s lip conveys uncertainty. A direct smile conveys
Eye Contact
In business, the style and duration of eye contact considered appropriate vary
greatly across cultures. In the United States, looking someone in the eye (for about a
second) is considered a sign of trustworthiness.
Facial Expressions
The human face can produce thousands of different expressions. These
expressions have been decoded by experts as corresponding to hundreds of different
emotional states (Ekman, et. al., 2008). Our faces convey basic information to the
outside world. Happiness is associated with an upturned mouth and slightly closed eyes;
fear with an open mouth and wide-eyed stare. Flitting (―shifty‖) eyes and pursed lips
convey a lack of trustworthiness. The effect of facial expressions in conversation is
instantaneous. Our brains may register them as ―a feeling‖ about someone‘s character.
The position of our body relative to a chair or another person is another powerful
silent messenger that conveys interest, aloofness, professionalism—or lack thereof. Head
up, back straight (but not rigid) implies an upright character. In interview situations,
experts advise mirroring an interviewer‘s tendency to lean in and settle back in her seat.
The subtle repetition of the other person‘s posture conveys that we are listening and
The meaning of a simple touch differs between individuals, genders, and
cultures. In Mexico, when doing business, men may find themselves being grasped on
the arm by another man. To pull away is seen as rude. In Indonesia, to touch anyone on
the head or touch anything with one‘s foot is considered highly offensive. In the Far
East, according to business etiquette writer Nazir Daud, ―it is considered impolite for a
woman to shake a man‘s hand (Daud, 2008).‖ Americans, as we have noted, place
great value in a firm handshake. But handshaking as a competitive sport (―the bonecrusher‖) can come off as needlessly aggressive, at home and abroad.
Anthropologist Edward T. Hall coined the term proxemics to denote the different
kinds of distance that occur between people. These distances vary between cultures.
The figure below outlines the basic proxemics of everyday life and their meaning (Hall,
Figure 2. Interpersonal Distances
Standing too far away from a colleague (such as a public speaking distance of more
than seven feet) or too close to a colleague (intimate distance for embracing) can
thwart an effective verbal communication in business.
Questions for Discussion
1. What communication activities have you engaged in yesterday? What
functions were served by each one?
2. When can nonverbal communication be a barrier to communication?
3. What message is conveyed for each type of communication?
Compare and Contrast the types of communication that would be most likely to occur
in each of the following contexts. Include a description of the nature of each
interaction, the probable attire of each person, and his or her demeanor.
The first few minutes of a party
A business meeting
A coffeehouse
A funeral home
5. A college classroom
6. A political rally
7. A football stadium
8. A computer chat room
On Nonverbal Communication. Use words you can think of to describe these pictures.
Lesson 3: Principles of Communication
Gamble and Gamble (2010) stated several core communication principles.
Communication is dynamic.
When we call communication a dynamic process, we mean that all its elements
constantly interact with and affect each other. Since all people are interconnected,
whatever happens to one person determines in part what happens to others.
Communication is unrepeatable and irreversible.
Every human contact is unique. It has never happened before, and never again
will it happen in just the same way. A communication encounter affects and changes
people so that the encounter can never happen in exactly the same way again. We
can neither take back something we have said nor erase the effects of something we
have done.
Communication is culturally linked.
Cultural diversity, including race, ethnicity, gender, and age, influences the
meanings we attribute to communication. Cultural differences exist not only between
persons who speak different languages but also between persons who speak the same
language as well. Every cultural group has its own rules or preferences for interaction.
When these are ignored or unknown, we are likely to misinterpret the meaning of
messages received and miscalculate the impact of messages sent.
Communication is influenced by Ethics.
Every time we communicate, we decide implicitly or explicitly whether we will do
so ethically. Ethics includes the moral principles, values and beliefs that the members of
society use to guide behaviour. Since communication has consequences, it involves
judgment of right and wrong. When the agreed-upon standards of behaviour are
violated, the behaviour is judged unethical. For example, most of us expect those with
whom we interact to be honest, play fair, respect our rights and accept responsibility
for their actions.
Communication is competence-based.
While we all have different communication strengths and weaknesses, we can
all benefit from getting better at communicating. When we add to our knowledge and
make a commitment to develop the skills to apply that knowledge across an array of
communication situations or contexts, we gain communication competence. For
example, included among the skills necessary for effective communication is the ability
to think critically. We have the ability to examine ideas reflectively and to decide what
we should and should not believe, think, or do, given the specific set of circumstances.
Communication is being transformed by media and technology.
As media critic Marshall McLuhan cautioned, ―The medium is the message.‖ In
McLuhan‘s view, different channels of communication affect the way a sender
encodes a message and the way a receiver responds to a message. The words
delivered face-to-face, on paper, or via radio or television do not constitute the same
message. The channel of communication changes things.
Not just the medium, but also its content, changes communication. The content
of books, newspapers, radio, television, and film, for example, also influence our cultural
values, often reinforcing the stereotypes we have of gender, race, and ethnicity and
contributing to the perceptions we have of various people and groups in society,
including ourselves.
Technology continues to speed up communication as it brings the world into our
living rooms and bedrooms, offices and cars. Instead of valuing sequential
understanding and careful logic, we now value immediate gratification and emotional
involvement. Technology has also given us the ability to interact in more ways.
In addition, Angell (1997) also stresses on these communication principles. These
principles will help you understand how communication is done and the aspects
involved when we communicate with others.
Communication is a process. The exchange of messages is ongoing and dynamic.
Communication is contextual. Our interactions with others occur during specific social
situations, in different physical environments, and for a variety of purposes.
Communication is continuous. It is an ongoing process.
Communication is symbolic. Words or nonverbal modes may be used in
Communication is culturally linked. Our communication style is linked to the culture into
which we are born.
Communication is collaborative. People work together to accomplish a goal.
Communication is ethical. Ethics is a system of principles that guide the proper conduct
of companies and individuals.
Communication can be oral or written. Below is a table that presents principles
of effective oral and written communication.
Be clear with your purpose. You
should know by heart your
objective in communicating.
Be complete with the message you
deliver. Make sure that your claims
are supported by facts and
essential information.
Be concise. You do not need to be
verbose or wordy with your
statements. Brevity in speech is a
Be natural with your delivery.
Punctuate important words with
appropriate gestures and
movements. Exude a certain
degree of confidence even if you
do not feel confident enough.
Be specific and timely with your
feedback. Inputs are most helpful
when provided on time.
1. Be clear. Be clear about your
message. Always be guided by
your purpose in communicating
2. Be concise. Always stick to the
point and do not beat or run
around the bush. Be brief by
focusing on your main point.
3. Be concrete. Support your
claims with enough facts. Your
readers will easily know if you
are bluffing or deceiving them
because there is nothing to
substantiate your claims.
4. Be correct. It is important that
you observe grammatical
correctness in your writing.
Always have time to revise and
edit your work. Even simple errors
may easily distract your readers.
5. Be coherent. Convey logical
messages. The idea should be
connected with each other and
related to the topic. Observe
sound structure that will present
a smooth flow of ideas. Use
transitional or cohesive devises
so that the ideas will cohere with
one another.
6. Be complete. Include all
necessary and relevant
information so that the
audience will not be left
wanting of any information.
7. Be courteous. The tone of your
writing should be friendly. Avoid
any overtone or insinuation to
eliminate confusion and
Communication Ethics
Ethics is the discussion of the judgments we make about the appropriateness, the
right or wrong, of our actions and policies be those actions communicative, political,
social, personal, or a mixture of areas (Johannensen,1990).
Ethics will help us determine whether what we say or do is suitable or proper
considering its effects on society. When a classmate, for instance, encourages you to
forge a signature for an important document, how would you respond?
There are situations in school or in the workplace when you have to decide on
what to say or what not to say, or even how to convey a message. People may
interpret messages differently. We vary in terms of cultural background and
personalities, hence there is a need to consider our behaviour when we communicate
with others.
One ethical issue in communication is plagiarism. It is best to be aware of the
rules on copyright and the legal issues on the use of information from various sources.
As a whole, for us to be guided in our decisions in our communication with
others, it is best to consider suggestions on ethical communication (Johannensen,1990).
Ethical communicators are respectful of their audiences.
Ethical communicators consider the consequences of their communication.
Ethical communicators respect truth.
Ethical communicators use information properly.
Ethical communicators do not falsify information.
Ethical communicators respect the rights of others to information.
As we communicate, we need to take into account the ethical aspect of our
interaction with others. Respecting others‘ rights and their views may result in
negotiations, effective communication, and a good working relationship.
In the workplace, Eunson (2007) listed ethical dilemmas that people are often
faced with, such as:
Should I embellish my resume or curriculum vitae with ‗half-truths‘ in order to get
a job?
Should I ‗lie with statistics‘ when using graphs or charts in documents or
presentations to make my arguments more persuasive?
Should I pass on, and perhaps embellish, rumours on the organizational
Should I plagiarize materials to pad out documents I am writing?
Should I use dubious tactics (attack the person, divide and conquer) when
negotiating with others?
Should I censor, filter or block information getting to others?
Should I censor myself or remain silent when the group I am in is making
important decisions?
Should I create ‗spin‘ or deceptive impressions when communicating with the
Should I use knowledge about human behaviour to more effectively manipulate
Should I deliberately distort the situation analysed in a report I am writing in order
to create further work opportunities for myself?
Should I use knowledge about leadership styles to manipulate others?
Should I manipulate meetings so that a hidden agenda, rather than the written
agenda, is followed?
Communication ethics emphasizes that morals influence the behavior of an
individual, group, or organization thereby affecting their communication. It is important
to note that one‘s behavior should be regulated by honesty, decency, truthfulness,
sincerity, and moral uprightness.
Be guided by the following to achieve ethical communication:
1. Establish an effective value system that will pave the way for the
development of your integrity as a person. One‘s behavior and decisionmaking style affect, in turn, the operations of an organization.
2. Provide complete and accurate information. Whether it is needed or not,
the data you provide should always be contextualized and correct.
3. Disclose vital information adequately and appropriately. Never conceal
or hide information that are necessary for purposes of transparency.
Observing a code of ethics is essential as it determines the kind of behavior that is
proper and desirable over one that is displeasing and offensive. A code of ethics
sets the standards to be observed by a person or a company that will create a
good reputation or a positive image not only for an individual but also for the
Questions for Discussion
1. Can you identify an experience in which the understanding or misunderstanding
of culture contributed to your communication effectiveness or ineffectiveness?
2. How would you describe the role that online interaction plays in your life? Do you
think it plays different roles in the lives of males as compared with females?
Find an article from a journal, a business magazine, or an online source about an
unethical situation involving a business or its employees. Write a one-page summary of
the situation and describe why the action was unethical.
Learning Outcomes
At the end of the unit, you are expected to:
1. explain fully how cultural and global issues affect communication;
2. appreciate the impact of communication on society and the world; and
3. suggest solutions to communication barriers in the global context.
Lesson1: Globalization
The way we live now has certainly changed because of many factors. People
can move freely from one country to another; we can communicate with people in
any part of the world; we can move products quickly; and people can instantly get
information anytime at any place. All these are possible because we thrive in a
globalized world. Ledbetter (2015) states that globalization represents a new, posttraditional order, forging new identities, institutions and ways of life. It is ‗the way we live
now‘, in a worldwide network of social relations, seemingly unfettered by the constraints
of geography.
Globalization has increased the economic, political, and cultural
interdependence of diverse cultures. Globalization is related to two other concepts—
diversity and glocalization. Diversity is the recognition and valuing of difference,
encompassing such factors as age, ethnicity, ability, religion, education, marital status,
sexual orientation, and income. Glocalization is a newer concept describing how
globalization affects and merges with local interests and environments.
Garret (2000) mentions that the causes of globalization are technological
innovations lowering the costs of moving goods and more notably information around
the world, growing international economic activity, and the liberalization of foreign
economic policies.
Economic Globalization
Nations are economically interdependent. For instance, Filipino workers are
found across the globe, and their income helps boost our economy. In order to solve
issues on unemployment, poverty, unending consumerism, economic exploitation of
workers in developing and developed countries, and deterioration of environment,
communication between and among countries is essential.
In addition, the economic welfare of member nations of international
organizations such as WTO, World Bank and IMF may also be controlled by these
organizations. The growth of multinational companies such as Coca Cola, Nike, and
McDonald‘s make products available in almost all countries.
Globalization of Government Policies
Government policies of developed countries are also globalized. Examples of
these are privatization of state enterprises and trade liberalization (removal of world
tariffs) which decreased trade barriers. Liberalization of ‗capital accounts‘ allow people
to invest overseas, and foreign funds can be invested in the home country.
Globalization of Culture
Some popular culture have been globalized like rock music, television dramas
and programs, movies, fast food, dance, and sports.
Language is part of culture, and the English language has become the ―world
language‖ or the lingua franca of the modern world. As English dominates, second
language and foreign speakers of English have developed their own varieties of English.
The study of World Englishes emerged.
In the age of globalization, people are likely to be working and living with people
from all over the world. Globalization has resulted in diversity in the workplace, hence
the need for effective communication skills in a diverse work environment.
Globalization and Its Impacts on Business Communication
Language is a part of culture and is closely bound to the principles, rules and
values which are formed in the given society.
The Impact of globalization on Cross-Cultural Communication
As society becomes more globally connected the ability to communicate across
cultural boundaries has gained increasing prominence. Global businesses must
understand how to communicate with employees and customers from different
cultures in order to fulfil the organization‘s mission and build value for stakeholders. The
use of technology has had a profound impact on how businesses communicate
globally and market their products and services. However, with the advancements in
technology, organizations must still be discerning of the culture nuisances that can
potentially present obstacles in trying to increase profits and market share. According
to Genevieve Hilton, ―cultural proficiency doesn't mean memorizing every cultural
nuance of every market. It's knowing when to listen, when to ask for help, and when—
finally—to speak‖
Culture can affect how we perceive the actions of others. Our perception of
others directly affects how we interpret their behavior and actions. Effective crossculture communication requires that we base our perceptions on facts and not merely
on personal biases and prejudices. Successful business leaders must be able to balance
organizational objectives with external global challenges. As organizations become
more interconnected the role of leaders in managing global teams is becoming
increasingly important. Being able to navigate through different cultural nuances is a
key skill for global leaders ( Matthews and Thakkar, 2012).
Cross-cultural Communication
Cross-cultural communication refers to the communication between people
who have differences in any one of the following: styles of working, age, nationality,
ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, etc. Cross-cultural communication can also
refer to the attempts that are made to exchange, negotiate and mediate cultural
differences by means of language, gestures and body language. It is how people
belonging to different cultures communicate with each other.
Each individual can practice culture at varying levels. There is the culture of the
community he grows up in, there is work culture at his workplace and other cultures to
which one becomes an active participant or slowly withdraws from. An individual is
constantly confronted with the clash between his original culture and the majority
culture that he is exposed to daily. Cultural clashes occur as a result of individuals
believing their culture is better than others.
Cross-cultural communication is necessary in order to avoid misunderstandings
that can lead to conflicts between individuals or groups. Cross-cultural communication
creates a feeling of trust and enables cooperation. The focus is on providing the right
response rather than providing the right message.
Matthews and Thakkar, (2012) suggest a cross-cultural model of communication
in organizations or in the workplace. Their model (see Figure 3) shows that
communication barriers can be eliminated for companies to be successful.
Figure 3. Cross Culture Communication Model
Successful cross-cultural communication creates a dialogue, a continuous
transfer of information. This exchange of information addresses our assumptions and
clarifies points we do not understand. It also provides the opportunity for us to ask
questions and confirm the information that was received. Having a dialogue reduces
conflict because cultural misunderstandings can be dealt with when they arise. The
dialogue only occurs when both parties agree to share information and ensure that the
transfer of information is not blocked.
Questions for Discussion
1. Is globalized culture a threat to local cultural differences?
2. Through the integration of economies, governmental policies, values and
cultures, has globalization made the world homogenous?
3. Why might a person not identify fully with members of his or her own culture until
becoming an immigrant in another country?
4. How does globalization influence business communication?
How close is the world to me?
Students develop an understanding of the links they have that extend beyond local
and national boundaries.
Create an image showing your connections to the rest of the world based on the music
you listen to, using the following questions.
What's the origin of the most recent song or piece of music that you listened to?
(Identify the nationality of the creator of the music as well as the tradition to which it
What technology do you most commonly use to listen to music?
Where is the technology made? Where is the company that owns the technology
based? How have you obtained music - online purchases or physically bought from
retail outlets?
Collect class data in relation to this and then make generalisations about any patterns
in the data. Do certain countries predominate in terms of musical choices and/or
owning or making technology? Which types of technology are most commonly used? Is
online or physical shopping more popular?
Create a visual representation of your generalisations (e.g. using graphs or a mapping
tool such as uMapper).
Use your visual generalisation to discuss: What is globalisation?
Think of a current event featuring in headlines around the world. (Hint: politics, music,
sport, film, celebrity culture, or disaster. Twitter might provide some ideas).
Write about the event using some of the following prompts: national identity, language,
design, place of manufacture, origin of natural resources, cultural traditions, use of
technology, history etc.
Working abroad
List the kinds of knowledge and skills that would be useful for living in another country.
Discuss how you would best prepare to spend a year of student exchange or work in a
country of your choice.
Select a culture that seems substantially different from your native culture. Using
the Internet, research the values and norms that are common in that other culture. In a
short essay, describe the values and norms of that culture and discuss how you would
use that knowledge to communicate effectively with people of that cultural
Research a multinational corporation (McDonald‘s, Apple, Toyota…) to
understand how companies respond to globalization. Be able to answer these
1. How do large corporations and financial institutions contribute to the
globalization process?
2. How do multinational corporations respond to environmental issues?
In Japan, the word for different is the same as the word ―wrong.‖ Compare and
contrast a culture in which the goal is to become as much like others as possible with a
culture in which the goal is to distinguish oneself from others. Which cultural attitude are
you most comfortable with?
At the end of the unit, you are expected to:
1. determine culturally appropriate terms and images that are sensitive to gender,
race, and class; and
2. adopt cultural and intercultural awareness and sensitivity in the communication
of ideas.
Lesson1: Local, global, and glocal communication
Local Communication
Communities develop their own ways of communicating with other people. They
have their own ways of exchanging information, conversation, ideas or messages with
other people using words, signs, writings, verbal or non-verbal means
of communication. In fact they use their own terms depending on their environment
and the social context. People identify themselves with a group or community with
members of the same language and culture.
Global Communication
As people are becoming more and more interdependent and technology has
greatly advanced, they engage in global communication. Communication globalizes
but it also remains local. (Mattelart, 2014).
Global communication today is a crucial source for our perceptions of the world
and for our sense of belonging to this world.
Global communication is a key player in the global economy.
Global communication is essential to global politics.
Military operations depend upon global communication.
Global communication is a carrier of cultural expressions.
Glocal Communication
According to Mattelart (2014), communication globalizes but it also remains
local. Global and local belong together. We do not live in the globe but in specific
locations. However cosmopolitan one may be, one‘s identity is primarily defined by
―locality‖: the locus of birth, family, language, jokes. Attachment to the place where
you experience the greatest cultural ―comfort‖ – often referred to as cultural proximity –
is an essential experience. We are global and local citizens and our communication
could possibly best be termed ―glocal‖. This notion connects the global (e.g. a product
for global marketing) with the local (e.g. local tastes and experiences).
Glocalization in business is communication which conveys and imparts the
essential core message and the spirit of a brand globally but can simultaneously
integrate at the local level the particularities of regional markets.
Lesson 2: Intercultural Communication
Intercultural communication is the exchange of information between individuals
who are unalike culturally. Intercultural communication is essential because of our
increasing exposure to people of other cultures and co-cultures. More people are
exposed to different global cultures through vacation travel, transnational jobs,
international conflicts, military and humanitarian service, and the presence of
immigrants, refugees and new citizens. Intercultural communication includes better
understanding of cultural and co-cultural friends and enemies (Pearson, Nelson,
Titsworth, & Harter, 2011). Being an effective communicator means interacting positively
with people from various racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds. You can
communicate better with people from other cultures if you know something about
According to science, each person is genetically unique. This uniqueness
becomes even more heightened because of individual experiences. Family
background, religious affiliations, educational achievements, sociocultural forces,
economic conditions, emotional states and other factors shape human identities.
Because of this, no two people can ever be exactly the same.
Culture is: The ever-changing values, traditions, social and political relationships,
and worldview created and shared by a group of people bound together by a
combination of factors (which can include a common history, geographic location,
language, social class, and/or religion)
What are some intercultural communication problems?
Intercultural communication is subject to all the problems that can hamper effective
interpersonal communication.
Ethnocentrism is the belief that your own group or culture is superior to all other
groups or cultures. In ethnocentrism, you use your own culture as the measure that
others are expected to meet. Cultural relativism is the belief that another culture should
be judged by its own context rather than measured against your culture. To
communicate effectively with people from different cultures, you need to accept
people whose values and norms may be different from your own. An effective
communicator avoids ethnocentrism and embraces cultural relativism.
Ethnocentrism is not the only perceptual trap you can fall into in intercultural
communication. Equally dangerous is the tendency to stereotype people in cultural
and co-cultural groups. Rogers and Steinfatt (1999) define a stereotype as ―a
generalization about some group of people that oversimplifies their culture.‖ The
stereotype of a gay male is an effeminate fellow, but gay people are just as likely to be
truckers, physicians and athletes.
Sometimes stereotyping occurs because people have had a negative or positive
experience with a person from another culture or co-culture. In one investigation,
people stereotyped black people after only one observation of a negative behaviour.
In another, simply hearing about an alleged crime was sufficient to stereotype blacks
(Henderson-King & Nisbett, 1996). Clearly, people are willing to stereotype with little
While ethnocentrism is thinking your culture is better than others and stereotyping
is acting as if all members of a group are alike, prejudice is a negative attitude toward
a group of people just because they are who they are. Often the groups on the
receiving end of prejudice are marginalized groups—people in poverty, people of
color, people who speak a language other than English, gay men and lesbian
women—but sometimes the group receiving the prejudice is actually larger than the
group that exhibits the prejudice.
Characteristics of Different Cultures
1. Individualistic Versus Collectivist Culture
Individualistic cultures value individual freedom, choice, uniqueness, and
independence. These cultures place ―I‖ before ―we‖ and value competition over
cooperation, private property over public or state owned property, personal behaviour
over group behaviour, and individual opinion over what anyone else might think.
Collectivist cultures, on the other hand, value the group over the individual.
These collectivist cultures place ―we‖ before ―I‖ and value commitment to family, tribe,
and clan; their people tend to be loyal to spouse, employer, community, and country.
Collectivist cultures value cooperation over competition, and group-defined social
norms and duties over personal opinions. An ancient Confucian saying captures the
spirit of collectivist cultures: ―If one wants to establish himself, he should help others to
establish themselves first.‖
2. M-Time Versus P-Time
M-time, or monochronic time schedule, compartmentalizes time to meet
personal needs, separates task and social dimensions, and points to the future (TingToomey, 1997). M- Time is dominant in Canada, the United States, and Northern
Europe. These cultures see time as something that can be compartmentalized, wasted,
or saved.
P-time, or polychromic time schedule views time as contextually based and
relationally oriented (Ting-Tooney, 1997, p. 395). For P-time cultures, time is not saved or
wasted; instead, time is only one factor in a much larger and more complicated
3. High-Context vs. Low-Context
All international communication is influenced by cultural differences. Even the
choice of communication medium can have cultural overtones. The determining factor
may not be the degree of industrialization, but rather whether the country falls into a
high-context or low-context culture (Goman, 2011). High-context cultures leave much
of the message unspecified, to be understood through context, nonverbal cues, and
between-the-lines interpretation of what is actually said. By contrast, low-context
cultures expect messages to be explicit and specific.
4. Affective vs. Neutral
In international business practices, reason and emotion both play a role. Which
of these dominates depends upon whether we are affective (readily showing
emotions) or emotionally neutral in our approach. Members of neutral cultures do not
telegraph their feelings, but keep them carefully controlled and subdued. In cultures
with high affect, people show their feelings plainly by laughing, smiling, grimacing,
scowling, and sometimes crying, shouting, or walking out of the room.
5. Non-verbal Cultural Differences in Communication
Our knowledge on nonverbal communication is invaluable. It helps us to be
conscious of messages that we may send in face-to-face setting.
Nonverbal Cultural Differences
The table below further shows some differences in nonverbal communication in some
Hand gestures
Hand sign for ―OK‖
characterized by touching
the forefinger and thumb
together can mean a
situation or person is
satisfactory in North
In Tunisia the ―OK‖ sign
means zero, like a person is
nothing. In Greece it is an
In Turkey, men sometimes
hold hands as a sign of
friendship. The Japanese
avoid touching as a
greeting, including shaking
hands, and prefer the
traditional bow.
Eye contact
Direct eye contact in
North America shows
interest and attention.
Physical Space
In North American culture,
standing in close proximity
can be uncomfortable
because this space is often
reserved for intimates.
In Japan and some other
Eastern cultures, direct eye
contact can signal
disrespect, aggression, or
an invasion of privacy.
In some South American
cultures, close physical
proximity can show
connection and comfort,
whether or not the person
is an intimate.
Tips for Effective Communication with Diverse Workplace Audiences
Understand the value of differences.
Don‘t expect conformity.
Practice focused, thoughtful and open-minded listening.
Invite, use, and give feedback.
Make fewer assumptions.
Learn about your cultural self.
Learn about other cultures and identity groups.
Seek common grounds.
Strategies for Improving Intercultural Communication
Having some strategies in advance will prepare you for new situations with
people from other cultures and co-cultures and will increase your confidence in your
ability to communicate effectively with a variety of people.
1. Conduct a personal self-assessment. How do your own attitudes toward different
cultures and co-cultures influence your communication with them?
2. Practice supportive communication behaviors. Supportive behaviors, such as
empathy, encourage success in intercultural exchanges; defensive behaviors
tend to hamper effectiveness.
3. Develop sensitivity toward diversity. One healthy communication perspective
holds that you can learn something from all people. Diverse populations provide
ample opportunity for learning. Take the time to learn about other cultures and
co-cultures before a communication situation.
4. Avoid stereotypes. Avoid making assumptions about another‘s culture, and get
to know individuals for themselves.
5. Avoid ethnocentrism. You may know your own culture the best, but familiarity
does not make your culture superior to all others. You will learn more about the
strengths and weaknesses of your own culture by learning more about other
6. Develop code sensitivity. Code sensitivity refers to the ability to use the verbal
and nonverbal language appropriate to the cultural or co-cultural norms of the
individual with whom you are communicating. The more you know about
another‘s culture, the better you will be at adapting.
7. Seek shared codes. A key ingredient in establishing shared codes is being openminded about differences while you determine which communication style to
adopt during intercultural communication.
8. Use and encourage descriptive feedback. Effective feedback encourages
adaption and is crucial in intercultural communication. Both participants should
be willing to accept feedback and exhibit supportive behaviours. Feedback
should be immediate, honest, specific, and clear.
9. Open communication channels. Intercultural communication can be frustrating.
One important strategy to follow during such interactions is to be patient as you
seek mutual understanding.
10. Manage conflicting beliefs and practices. Think ahead about how you might
handle minor and major differences, from everyday behaviour to seriously
different practices like punishments, realities, and beliefs.
Language plays an important role in achieving a more effective communication.
Using appropriate terms also avoids conflicts and misunderstanding. Study the table
Gender biased
female doctor, woman attorney,
cleaning woman
waiter/waitress, authoress, stewardess
mankind, man-hour, man-made
office girls
the doctor . . . he
the teacher . . . she
executives and their wives
foreman, flagman, workman
businessman, salesman
Each employee had his picture taken.
Racially or Ethnically Biased
An Indian accountant was hired.
James Lee, an African American,
Age Biased
The law applied to old people.
Sally Kay, 55, was transferred.
a spry old gentleman
a little old lady
Disability Biased
afflicted with arthritis, suffering from . . .,
crippled by . . .
confined to a wheelchair
Bias- free
doctor, attorney, cleaner
server, author, flight attendant
humanity, working hours, artificial
office workers
doctors . . . they
teachers . . . they
executives and their spouses
lead worker, flagger, worker
businessperson, sales representative
Each employee had a picture taken. All
employees had their pictures taken. Each
employee had his or her picture taken.
Bias- free
An accountant was hired.
James Lee applied.
Bias -free
The law applied to people over sixty-five.
Sally Kay was transferred.
a man
a woman
Bias -free
has arthritis
uses a wheelchair
Questions for Discussion
1. To which culture do you belong? Describe some of its characteristics, then
examine how it differs from other cultures.
2. Consider the cultural characteristics discussed. Which culture do you identify
with most of prefer?
3. What is the implication of a diverse workplace environment?
4. How can your own cultural experiences affect your performance at work?
5. To what extent does cultural relativism or ethnocentrism affect you?
Examine carefully the sayings below, and determine whether they reflect a collectivist
or an individualistic culture.
When spiders unite, they can tie up a lion.
God helps those who help themselves.
The squeaky wheel gets the grease.
The ill-mannered child finds a father wherever he goes.
Your Task: Consider how such differences could affect the communication, for
instance, between an interviewer and a job candidate. If negatively, how could the
differences and barriers be overcome? Role-play or discuss a potential job interview
conversation between the following individuals. After a while summarize your findings,
either orally or in writing:
a. A female top executive is interviewing a prospective future assistant, who is male.
b. A candidate with a strong but not disruptive foreign accent is being interviewed by a
native-born human resources manager.
c. A manager dressed in a conventional business suit is interviewing a person wearing a
d. A person over fifty is being interviewed by a hiring manager in his early thirties.
e. A recruiter who can walk is interviewing a job seeker using a wheelchair.
At the end of the lesson, you are expected to:
1. distinguish formal from informal language in both oral and written registers;
2. differentiate spoken and written register; and
3. adopt awareness of audience and context in conveying ideas.
Lesson1: Register
As you go through your normal day, you engage in conversations and read
different types of texts which means you deal with different types of registers—spoken
and written. You may listen to the news before you go to school, watch a You Tube
video, read a daily paper, or prepare a report for your subject. All these are situations
when you use a specific variety of language.
Michael Halliday categorized register based on context. Register is
characterized by ―differences in the type of language selected as appropriate to
different types of situation‖ (Halliday, 1964, 87).
Halliday identified three parameters that can be used to specify the context of
situation in which language is used.
Field of discourse is ―the total event, in which the text is functioning, together
with the purposive activity of the speaker or writer; it thus includes the subject-matter as
one element in it‖ (Halliday 1994, 22). The field describes activities and processes that
are happening at the time of speech. The analysis of this parameter focuses on the
entire situation, e.g. when a mother talks to her child.
The mode of discourse refers to ―the function of the text in the event, including
therefore both the channel taken by the language – spoken or written, extempore or
prepared – and its [genre], or rhetorical mode, as narrative, didactic, persuasive,
‗phatic communion‘ and so on‖ (Halliday 1994, 22). This variable determines the role
and function of language in a particular situation. When analyzing the mode of a text,
the main question is ‗What is achieved by the use of language in this context?‘ For
example, a fairy tale (in written form) may have a narrative or entertaining function. A
spoken conversation can be argumentative (in a discussion) or phatic (e.g. to contact
someone or to keep in touch with someone).
Tenor of discourse (sometimes also referred to as style; cf. Esser 2009, 78)
describes the people that take part in an event as well as their relationships and
statuses. ―The tenor refers to the type of role interaction, the set of relevant social
relations, permanent and temporary, among the participants involved‖ (Halliday 1994,
22.). There might be a specific hierarchy between the interlocutors, e.g. when the head
of a business talks to an employee, or they may have only a temporary relationship, e.g.
when a person asks an unknown pedestrian for the time.
In addition, Biber and Conrad (2009) define register and genre as varieties
associated with particular situations of use and particular communicative purposes.
Taken together, register/genre variation is a fundamental aspect of human language.
All cultures and languages have an array of registers/genres, and all humans control a
range of registers/genres. Biber and Conrad categorized register based on texts. Biber
(1999) considers four major registers: conversation, fiction, newspaper language, and
academic prose. He states that these register share common language features such
as nouns, pronouns, verbs and adjectives.
Spoken Registers
Spoken registers differ from written registers in several fundamental ways. The
most obvious, of course, is that they are produced in the spoken mode. This difference
also entails less opportunity for planning what you are going to say, and no possibility of
editing or revision. A speaker can say something again in speech, but he cannot erase
the original utterance.
Additionally, there are differences in the typical communicative functions of
many spoken registers when compared to written registers. Many previous studies in
linguistics have focused on the ideational function of language: how speakers use
language to communicate ideas and information. Language is intimately connected
to ideational functions: it is nearly impossible to communicate a new idea without using
language. Ideational functions are also important for the description of registers.
However, in everyday speech, speakers are often more concerned about
conveying their own feelings and attitudes than describing or explaining factual
information. In addition, spoken registers are usually interactive; most of the time when
we talk, we are using language to communicate with a specific person –
the interlocutor – who responds directly to us. In this case, we use language to support
and develop the relationship with our interlocutor. These uses of language –
the interpersonal functions – are fundamentally important in most spoken registers (Biber
& Conrad, 2009).
Conversation is the most basic register of human language. Most of us spend
much more time participating in conversations than any other use of language.
Conversation is acquired naturally; all children learn how to participate in
conversations, and all cultures and languages have a conversational register. In
contrast, relatively few adults ever learn how to produce written registers like
newspaper editorials or legal opinions. In fact, many adults never write extended prose
of any type, and some cultures / languages have no written registers at all. Other
spoken registers are also much less basic than conversation. Although adult speakers of
English readily recognize spoken registers like radio news reporting, sports broadcasts,
political speeches, and classroom teaching, few speakers are actually required to
produce the language of those registers. But conversation is universal and can be
regarded as the basic register of human communication. Conversation is a general
register category, and it is possible to distinguish among specific subregisters such as
telephone conversations or workplace conversations. One basic characteristic of all
conversation is that it takes place in the spoken mode. As a result, conversational
participants can utilize paralinguistic devices to communicate including loudness,
pitch, and length.
Topics in conversations are much more concerned with the participants‘ own
personal feelings, attitudes, desires, likes, and dislikes: what we refer to as the expression
of personal stance.
Style of Spoken English:
Preston and Shuy (1988) stated five styles of spoken register.
1. Frozen- the most careful and elegant variety, reserved for very important or
symbolic moments.
Examples include biblical verse, prayers, the Pledge of Allegiance, and so forth.
2. Formal- the generally serious level of language use. This is the register used for
most academic and scientific publishing.
Example: ―have not‖ instead of ―haven‘t‖
3. Consultative- the plain everyday style. Some sources say this register is the formal
register used in conversation
Example: ―Doctor‖, ―Mr.‖ or ―Mrs.‖.
4. Casual – normal, relaxed style, appropriate to conversations with friends
Example: sis, bestie, girl
5. Intimate- the most grammatically and phonologically reduced style
Written Register
Unlike speech, writing allows you to sit and think about what you want to say,
look over what you have written, and revise it. These characteristics have important
consequences for the language of written registers generally. But writers can also
choose to use their planning and revising time to create very different kinds of texts,
and this chapter also illustrates some of the variation that exists among different written
One major situational characteristic shared by many written registers is a primary
focus on communicating information rather than on developing a personal relationship.
Of course, there are few uncontestable ―facts,‖ and so most communication – in writing
or speech – reflects some ideological perspective. Further, it is possible in writing to be
interpersonal, and registers like personal letters or e-mail messages can be focused
more on sharing personal feelings and attitudes than conveying information
Formal Registers
A formal register is often used in academic writing. It is a register where strong
opinions can be expressed objectively. It does not break any of the written rules of
grammar and often has a set of rules of what not to do when using this register.
Academic writers need to select the words and structures that are most
appropriate for the situation and most likely to achieve the desired effect.
Ten linguistic parameters of register variation in professional communication (GimenezMoreno, 2011a:19)
A- Informal/Casual (showing
commitment, involvement and
Personal expressions
B Formal/Ritual
(Showing deference, neutrality and
Impersonal expressions
Active verbs/expressions
Passive verbs/expressions
Direct speech
Indirect speech
Ordinary reporting verbs (e.g. say)
Specific reporting verbs (e.g.mention)
Ordinary connectors (e.g. so)
More elaborate connectors (e.g.
General terms/expression (e.g. man)
Precise terms/ expressions (e.g.
Emotive/subjective/ attitudinal terms (e.g.
Neutral/objective terms (e.g. inform)
Phrasal verbs and informal idiomatic
Latin terms and standard formal
Use of contractions, abbreviations and
―fast language‖
Detailed and concrete expressions
without contractions using nominalization
and modifiers
Take a look at the following statements and observe the degree of formality in each
Research, I guess, is about trying to find out something new about a topic.
Research is a careful study in order to learn about new facts or information.
Research is an intellectual journey that sets out to create new knowledge.
Research is a critical course investigation that endeavours to discover facts by
scientific study of a subject.
Questions for Discussion
1. Why is it important to use an appropriate register at a particular
communicative situation?
2. What rules do we follow for formal register?
3. How can the registers be applied in academic and professional
Here are some phrases that belong to different communicative situations, such
―greeting‖, ―complaint‖ and ―encouragement‖. Copy & post them into the right
Thanks for following up on the
Ennriquez account. Great
I‘m crazy about you, Honey.
I‘m sick and tired of your
I offer you all my prayers,
works, joys and suffering of
this day…
Excuse me Ms. Anderson. As I
understand the task, we
need to focus on improving
our delivery times rather than
blaming our
How's my little snuggy
Welcome to the Cultural
Center of the Philippines.
Remember that no flash
photography is allowed…
Oh, Bob. Just a moment!
Listen, you know... well... what
was with that off-key
last night?
Hello, Mr. Smith. How are you
this morning?
Hey Jack. What‘s up?
This is a complaint for
damages and injunctive relief
arising out of manipulative
activities in the gold market
from 1994 to the
present time...
I hope you don't mind my
stating that the service is
unsatisfactory. I would like a
Thank you for applying for this
position. We‘ll let you know
within a week if you have
been chosen for an interview.
Good morning. May I speak
to the director,
please? I hope you don't
mind my stating that the
service is unsatisfactory. I
would like a
Whoa, way to go! Nice
Match the formal language with the informal language.
Formal- Written Language
1. I intend to resign.
2. I accept all responsibility.
3. I regret my actions.
4. I regret having to inform you.
5. I am willing to train my
Informal- Spoken Language
a. Ok, so I‘m sorry.
b. Sure, I‘ll help the guy get started.
c. I‘m going to quit.
d. I messed up.
e. I‘m sorry but you gotta know.
Spoken language is often informal. Academic and business communication is usually
formal. Brainstorm a list of informal words and expressions and their formal equivalents.
Share your list with the class.
How are things?
How have you been?
Order the sentences below to make a telephone conversation. Then circle the informal
phrases and expressions.
__________Wayne: Hi. Is that Shelley?
__________Wayne: Yeah! Bad news. The disinfectant is out of stock.
__________Shelley: Hi, Wayne. Any news on my order for the disinfectant?
__________Shelley: Hey, stop winding me up! So when do we get it?
__________Wayne: But the good news is that it‘s due in tomorrow.
__________Shelley: Out of stock! Oh, no. My boss will kill me.
__________Wayne: Sure thing, Shelley. I‘ll get an e-mail off right away.
__________Shelley: Well, Wayne. You‘re just one efficient guy. Hopefully the news will get
my boss to stop breathing down my neck. Appreciate the call. Talk to you
__________Shelley: Ok. Thursday‘s cool. Look, do you think you could put that down in
writing because my boss is blaming me.
__________Wayne: I‘ll send it off right away. You should have it by Thursday.
Write the letter Wayne would send to Shelley. Use the formal expressions below.
Take delivery of
receive, get
send it, send it off, get it off
send money back
trouble, hassle
Lesson2: Varieties of the English Language
World English vs. World Englishes
World English refers to the English language as a lingua franca used in business, trade,
diplomacy and other spheres of global activity, while World Englishes refers to the
different varieties of English and English-based creoles developed in different regions of
the world. World Englishes is also a term for emerging localized or indigenized varieties
of English, especially varieties that have developed in territories influenced by the
United Kingdom.
Braj Kachru’s Three Concentric Circles of Asian Englishes
• According to Kachru (1992a) the global spread of English can be explained in terms
of two diasporal transportations.
1. The first dispersal was within the Inner Circle where a monolingual English-speaking
population migrated on a relatively large scale to countries like North America,
Australia and New Zealand.
2. The second diaspora of the Outer and Expanding circle was the result of the
colonization of Asia and Africa by the British.
The Expanding Circle includes the countries in which
English plays no historical or governmental role but is
widely used as a medium of international
communication. This includes much of the rest of the
world's population not categorized as either of the
other two circles: China, Russia, Japan, most of
Europe, Korea, Egypt, Indonesia, etc. It is difficult to
estimate the total number of people in the Expanding
Circle, but the estimates range from 100 million to
one billion.
Figure 1: The Three Concentric Circles
The English varieties in each circle have their own
characteristics. The Inner Circle of English took
shape first and spread across the world in the first
diaspora. In this early spread of English, speakers
from England carried the language to the colonies,
such as Australia, New Zealand, North America, and
so on. The English language in this circle represents
the traditional historical and sociolinguistic bases in
the regions where it is now used as English as the
Native Language (ENL): the United Kingdom, the
United States, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland,
Canada, South Africa, and some of the Caribbean
territories. In these countries, English is the native
language or mother tongue for most people. The
total number of English speakers in this circle is
estimated to be as many as around 380 million. The
Outer Circle of English was made during the second
diaspora of English, which diffused the language
through the expansion of Great Britain.
In the areas such as Asia and Africa, English is not
the native language, but it serves as a useful lingua
franca between various ethnic and language groups.
Some people with higher education, the legislature
and judiciary, national commerce, and others may
speak English for practical purposes.
The countries in this circle include India, Nigeria,
Bangladesh, Pakistan, Malaysia, Tanzania, Kenya,
non Anglophone South Africa, the Philippines
47 and
others. The total number of English speakers is
estimated to range from 150 million to 300 million.
The English language has a lot of varieties. The British and American English have
been recognized as the standard varieties of English, and for years Filipinos have used
the American English. But the Filipinos have formed their own variety of the English
language which is Philippine English.
These are the some examples of the differences of the British English and
American English.
boot (of a car)
drug store
Questions for Discussion:
1. Why is there a need to study the varieties of the English language?
2. Which variety should be used in the workplace?
3. How can you distinguish the speakers from the circles?
Match these common British English words with their American equivalent?
British English
1. estate car
2. biscuit
3. ground floor
4. petrol
5. pavement
6. sweets
7. tap
8. underground
American English
a. gas
b. subway
c. candy
d. station wagon
e. first floor
f. cookie
g. sidewalk
h. faucet
Research further on the differences between American and British English. Fill the table
Differences between British and American English
1. Research on Asian Englishes from the outer circle and fill the table below.
English Variety
Phonological Features
Lexical Features
1. Philippine English
2. Malaysian English
3. Singaporean
4. Indian English
Learning Outcomes
At the end of the lesson, you are expected to:
evaluate reading texts in content areas;
apply reading strategies in comprehending various texts;
explain the characteristics of active listeners;
differentiate visual from critical visual literacy; and
analyze visual images using the critical visual literacy framework.
Lesson1: Critical Reading
In your academic and professional undertakings you need critical or evaluative
literacy. Your content subjects demand reading, especially for board courses. Reading
any material enables you to amass knowledge and information available in print and
online sources.
Before you can read critically, however, you should equip yourselves with basic
reading skills such as fluency. Fluency pertains to your reading speed. According to
Crawley and Meritt (2009), fluency in reading means decreasing reversals, omissions,
substitutions, non-pronunciations, repetitions, and insertions. Decreasing faulty reading
habit as subvocalization, lip movement, finger pointing, and head movement will also
accelerate your reading.
Your vocabulary skills can be enhanced through learning morphology like
compound words, contractions, affixes, and root words. Strange words really hinder
comprehension so it is imperative that you know some strategies in determining word
meaning. It‘s easy for you to say, ―Look it up in the dictionary.‖ But what if you do not
have a dictionary at hand? Some strategies like using context clues and determining
word parts can help you expedite vocabulary building. Moreover, as effective readers,
you must recognize main ideas from supporting details, identify facts from opinions,
summarize important ideas, draw inferences, and form conclusions.
Of paramount importance is critical reading or critical literacy. Critical literacy is
the process of making evaluations or judgments when experiencing ―print, non-print,
image-based, and verbal‖ communication (Phelps, 2002). Critical literacy is the highest
level of comprehension. It involves analysis, synthesis, and evaluation.
During critical reading, you may be asked to determine the author‘s purpose or
competence, the authenticity of sources and facts. You may be asked to judge
whether events, incidents, or characters are real or fictitious, or evaluate the suitability
of a character‘s actions.
By taking an actively critical approach to reading, you will be able to do the
Stay focused while you read the text
Understand the main idea of the text
Understand the overall structure or organization of the text
Retain what you have read
Pose informed and thoughtful questions about the text
Evaluate the effectiveness of ideas in the text
Take a look at the sample text, then guided by the critical questions, criticize the text.
Teams are not magic. They must have tasks that are achievable within a
specified time frame. The team charged with 'management' has an impossible
brief and will surely fail unless effort is spent spelling out what the management
task involves and what constitutes success.
Neither are teams a cheap option. They inevitably consume resources and
time. Teams rarely resolve conflict. More often, they pressure-cook it.
If an individual has the skills to do the job with the requisite creativity, then the
individual, not the team, should do the job.
1. What evidence does the author provide to support his or her argument?
2. Is the last sentence a fact or an opinion?
Steps to becoming a critical reader
1. Prepare to become part of the writer's audience.
Authors design texts for specific audiences, and becoming a member of the
target audience makes it easier to get the author's purpose. Learn about the author,
the history of the author and the text, the author's anticipated audience; read
introductions and notes.
2. Prepare to read with an open mind.
Critical readers seek knowledge; they do not "rewrite" a work to suit their own
personalities. Your task as an enlightened critical reader is to read what is on the page,
giving the writer a fair chance to develop ideas and allowing yourself to reflect
thoughtfully, objectively, on the text.
3. Consider the title.
This may seem obvious, but the title may provide clues to the writer's attitude,
goals, personal viewpoint, or approach.
4. Read slowly.
Again, this appears obvious, but it is a factor in a "close reading." By slowing
down, you will make more connections within the text.
5. Use the dictionary and other appropriate reference works.
If there is a word in the text that is not clear or difficult to define in context: look it
up. Every word is important, and if part of the text is thick with technical terms, it is
doubly important to know how the author is using them.
6. Make notes.
Jot down marginal notes, underline and highlight, write down ideas in a
notebook, do whatever works for your own personal taste. Note for yourself the main
ideas, the thesis, the author's main points to support the theory. Writing while reading
aids your memory in many ways, especially by making a link that is unclear in the text
concrete in your own writing.
7. Keep a reading journal.
In addition to note-taking, it is often helpful to regularly record your responses
and thoughts in a more permanent place that is yours to consult. By developing a habit
of reading and writing in conjunction, both skills will improve.
Critical reading involves using logical and rhetorical skills. Identifying the author's
thesis is a good place to start, but to grasp how the author intends to support it is a
difficult task. More often than not an author will make a claim (most commonly in the
form of the thesis) and support it in the body of the text. The support for the author's
claim is in the evidence provided to suggest that the author's intended argument is
sound, or reasonably acceptable. What ties these two together is a series of logical links
that convinces the reader of the coherence of the author's argument: this is the
warrant. If the author's premise is not supportable, a critical reading will uncover the
lapses in the text that show it to be unsound.
Content Area Reading
In college, you encounter reading materials in your respective disciplines, hence
you use reading as a tool for thinking and learning in your content subjects. One goal of
content area learning is to get students to think as they read (Faber, 2015). Your prior
knowledge and experiences, language development, reading ability, and attitudes
toward school are all critical elements in content area learning. Readers who prejudge
reading materials as too hard and boring will have trouble understanding texts.
One way to deal with content materials is to consider text features. Text features
differ from subject to subject, so the reading skills and strategies you use will also
change from subject to subject.
According to Faber (2015), authors often organize their text by patterns.
Common patterns found in textbooks are:
Descriptive pattern
Episode pattern
Time sequence
Process/ cause-effect
General to specific
Reading Strategies
There are various strategies that you can employ in reading. As readers, you
might have encountered problems such as poor comprehension, slow reading speed,
regression, subvocalization, poor memory, and many other challenges. Your positive
attitude toward reading and your motivation will help you overcome these challenges.
Remember that if you are enrolled in a board course, you need to improve your
reading skills. The strategies below will hopefully aid you in your reading tasks.
1. Previewing
Research shows that it is easier to understand what you are reading if you begin
with a general idea of what the passage is about. Previewing helps you form a general
idea of the topic in mind.
To preview, read the title, if there is one; the first sentence of each paragraph;
and the last sentence of the passage. You should do this as quickly as possible.
Directions: Preview the following passage. Underline the first sentence in each
paragraph and the last sentence. Can you identify the topic?
A black hole is a region of space created by the total gravitational collapse of
matter. It is so intense that nothing, not even light or radiation, can escape. In other
words, it is a one-way surface through which matter can fall inward but cannot
Some astronomers believe that a black hole may be formed when a large star
collapses inward from its own weight. As long as they are emitting heat and light into
space, stars support themselves against their own gravitational pull with the outward
thermal pressure generated by heat from nuclear reactions deep in their interiors, but if
a star eventually exhausts its nuclear fuel, then its balanced gravitational attraction
could cause it to contract and collapse. Furthermore, it could begin to pull in
surrounding matter, including nearby comets and planets, creating a black hole.
Answer: The topic is about black holes.
2. Reading for main ideas
By previewing, you can form a general idea of what a reading passage is about;
that is, you identify the topic. By reading for main ideas, you identify the point of view of
the author; that is, what the writer‘s thesis is. Specifically, what does the author propose
to write about the topic? If you could reduce the reading to one sentence, what would
it be?
Questions about the main idea can be worded in many ways. For example, the
following questions are all asking for the same information: (1) What is the main idea?
(2) What is the subject? (3) What is the topic? (4) What would be a good title?
Directions: The main idea usually occurs at the beginning of a reading passage.
Underline the first two sentences in the following passage. Can you identify the main
idea? What would be a good title for this passage?
For more than a century, despite attacks by a few opposing scientists, Charles
Darwin‘s theory of evolution by natural selection has stood firm. Now, however, some
respected biologists are beginning to question whether the theory accounts for major
developments such as the shift from water to land habitation. Clearly, evolution has not
proceeded steadily but has progressed by radical advances. Recent research in
molecular biology, particularly in the study of DNA, provides us with a new possibility.
Not only environmental but also genetic codes in the underlying structure of DNA could
govern evolution.
Answer: The main idea is that biologists are beginning to question Darwin‘s theory.
A good title would be Questions about Darwin‘s theory.
3. Using Context Clues for Vocabulary
Before you can use a context, you must understand what a context is. In English,
a context is the combination of vocabulary and grammar that surrounds a word.
Context can be a sentence or a paragraph or a passage. Context helps you make a
general prediction about meaning. If you know the general meaning of a sentence,
you also know the general meaning of the words in the sentence.
Making predictions from contexts is very important when you are reading. You can
read and understand the meaning of a passage without stopping to look up every new
word in a dictionary.
Directions: Read the following passage, paying close attention to the underlined words.
Can you understand their meanings from the context without using a dictionary?
At the age of sixty-six, Harland Sanders had to auction off everything he owned
in order to pay his debts. Once a successful proprietor of a large restaurant, Sanders
saw his business suffer from the construction of a new freeway that bypassed his
establishment and rerouted the traffic that had formerly passed.
Answers: auction means to sell
proprietor means owner
formerly means in the past
4. Scanning for details
After reading a passage, you will be expected to answer questions. First, read a
question and find the important content words. Content words are usually nouns, verbs,
or adjectives. They are called content words because they contain the content of the
Next, let your eyes travel quickly over the passage for the same content words or
synonyms of the words. This is called scanning. By scanning, you can find a place in the
reading passage where the answer to the question is found. Finally, read those specific
sentences carefully and choose the answer that corresponds to the meaning of the
sentences you have read.
Directions: First, read this passage. Then, read the questions following the reading
passage, and circle the content words. Finally, scan the passage for the same words or
synonyms. Can you answer the questions?
To prepare for a career in engineering, a student must begin planning in high
school. Mathematics and science should form the core curriculum. For example, in a
school where sixteen credit hours are required for high school graduation, four should
be in mathematics, one each in chemistry, biology, and physics. The remaining credits
should include four in English, and at least three in the humanities and social sciences.
The average entering freshman in engineering should have achieved at least a 2.5
grade point average on a 4.0 scale in his or her high school. Although deficiencies can
be corrected during the first year, the student who needs additional work should
expect to spend five instead of four years to complete a degree.
1. What is the average grade point for an entering freshman in engineering?
2. When should a student begin planning for a career in engineering?
3. How long will a student, who needs additional work, expect to complete a
degree ?
4. How many credits should a student have in English?
5. How many credits are required for a high school diploma?
Answers: 1. 2.5
2. in high school
3. 5 years
4. four
5. sixteen
5. Making Inferences
Sometimes, in a reading passage, you will find a direct statement of fact. That is
called evidence. But other times, you will not find a direct statement. Then you will need
to use the evidence you have to make an inference. An inference is a logical
conclusion based on evidence. It can be about the passage itself or about the author‘s
Directions: First, read this passage. Then, read the questions following the passage, and
make inferences. Can you circle the evidence for your inference in the reading
When an acid is dissolved in water, the acid molecule divides into two parts, a
hydrogen ion and another ion. An ion is an atom or a group of atoms which has an
electrical charge. The charge can be either positive or negative. If hydrochloric acid is
mixed with water, for example, it divides into hydrogen ions and chlorine ions.
A strong acid ionizes to a great extent, but a weak acid does not ionize so much.
The strength of an acid, therefore, depends on how much it ionizes, not on how many
hydrogen ions are produced. It is interesting that nitric acid and sulfuric acid become
greatly ionized whereas boric acid and carbonic do not.
1. What kind of acid is sulfuric acid?
2. What kind of acid is boric acid?
Answers: 1. A strong acid ionizes to a great extent, and sulfuric acid becomes greatly
Conclusion: Sulfuric acid is a strong acid.
2. A weak acid does not ionize so much, and boric acid does not ionize
Conclusion: Boric acid is a weak acid.
6. Drawing conclusions
A conclusion refers to information that is implied or inferred. This means that the
information is not clearly stated in the text.
Directions: Read the passage and draw a conclusion.
Video gaming is one of the largest industries in America. Each day more
and more children are getting addicted to video games. There have been
many video game opponents accusing the industry of becoming too violent. It is
not uncommon to play a shoot‘em up game where ten people are getting killed
every minute. Yet, despite societal pressures to eliminate violent video games, as
each day passes, more gamers are getting hooked.
Which conclusion can you draw about the video game industry?
Answer: As time goes on more and more children will play video games.
Questions for Discussion
1. How do you read critically?
2. What challenges do you encounter as a reader?
3. What reading strategies do you employ in comprehending content materials?
4. Which among the reading strategies below do you find effective?
KWL charts
Anticipation guides
Questioning the author
Graphic organizers
Concept maps
Column notes
Visual reading guides
Directions: You have five minutes to complete this test. Carefully read the entire test
before doing anything. In order to ensure the accuracy of this exam, you should not
use more than the allotted time of five minutes. Good Luck!
NT 1
You may begin now!
1. Write today's date—month-day-year in the top right hand corner of your test
2. Write the answer to the following multiplication problem directly
underneath the date on your test paper--6 X 5 = ?
3. Write the name of the month that begins with the letter "D" in the top left hand
corner of your test paper.
4. Add 15 to the answer you got in #2, and write this new total directly
underneath your answer for #3.
5. In the lower left hand corner of your test paper, write the names of your
favorite singer and your favorite group.
6. Just above your answer to #5, write "This test is very easy."
7. In the lower right hand corner of your test paper, draw a rectangle and inside
the rectangle draw a five pointed star. The size of these drawings is not
8. Directly above your answer to #7, draw a row of three small circles. Once
again, size is not important.
9. Write the name of the first president of the Philippines on the back of your test
paper anywhere you choose. If you don't know who this is, write your own
name instead.
10. Write the name of any country that begins with the letter "I" directly
underneath you answer to #2.
11. Take the number of dwarfs in the Snow White story and add it to the number
of bears in the Goldilocks story. Divide by 2. Write this total in the approximate
center of your test paper.
12. Think of a number between 1 and 50. Double that number. Add 20. Add
6. Subtract 17. Subtract 9. Divide by 2. Write this number on your test paper
directly underneath your answer to #11.
13. Now that you have carefully read all of the parts so far, and you have not
carried out any of the actual work, skip the next 2 questions and go back and
only complete #3.
14. The name of the first president of the United States is George Washington. He
was president from 1789 until 1797. Add the two dates together to see if the
total is less than 5000.
You should not be reading the end of the exam before the beginning of the exam,
but now that you are here, you have just wasted some of your time.
Directions: Read each sentence and determine the meaning of the word using cross sentence
clues or your prior knowledge. Then explain what clues in the sentence helped you determine the
word meaning.
1. Intrepid: one might think that the child would be afraid of such a large animal, but the
intrepid young girl ran up to the beast and began scratching it behind the ears.
What clues in the sentence led you to your definition?
2. Servile: Janet disliked the servile students, the ones who are always volunteering to help
the teacher grade papers or clean the board.
What clues in the sentence led you to your definition?
3. Derision: Clyde could no longer tolerate the derision of his classmates, who would always
refer to him by no other name than Potty- Pants Clyde, so he transferred schools.
Definition: ____________________________________________________________________
What clues in the sentence led you to your definition?
4. Implore: I implore the school board members and administrators to take a closer look at
cyberbullying as it is practiced in our community, and take action against it before
another senseless tragedy occurs.
Definition: ____________________________________________________________________
What clues in the sentence led you to your definition?
5. Incline: He offered me twenty dollars to eat a dragonfly. I need money very badly that I
am inclined to accept the challenge.
Definition: ____________________________________________________________________
What clues in the sentence led you to your definition?
6. Incessant: John could not focus on the assignment with the incessant chatting that was
occurring all around him.
Definition: ____________________________________________________________________
What clues in the sentence led you to your definition?
Read an article from any of your content subjects, then do the reading pyramid
graphic organizer.
Read the word problem and write a summary.
Word problem
Samantha is helping her mother and father arrange bricks for a new walkway in
their backyard. There are 624 bricks. Samantha has to put the bricks in rows of 5
bricks. What number sentence can be used to find out how many rows of bricks
Samantha can make? Will they have any bricks left over? If so, how many?
Write a 10-15- word summary:
Instruction: Read the passage and write phrases answering these questions on
the diagonal lines designated by each question.
All plants use sugars (food) as energy to grow and complete other life activities. Unlike
humans, plants can make their own food. By collecting water from the ground, carbon dioxide
from the air, and light from the sun, they can produce the food they need through the process
of photosynthesis. The most important part of photosynthesis is sunlight. To capture sunlight,
plants must use a special substance called chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is a green pigment in plants
that traps light from the sun. This sunlight is then changed into energy, in the form of sugar and
oxygen. Some of the sugar and oxygen that plants make is used, some is stored for later.
Photosynthesis takes place during respiration, or whenever the plant breathes. In other
words, it happens almost constantly. As carbon dioxide is produced by animals and people, it is
collected and used by plants to make food. Then, the oxygen that is not used by the plant is
released through the stomata to be used by other organisms (like humans!) for breathing. This
never ending cycle provides energy for all living beings.
Lesson 2: Critical Viewing
Analysing Visual Images
You deal with multimodal texts every day. You watch videos from You Tube,
enjoy pictures from Facebook, and laugh at advertisements in televisions. Multimodal
texts abound in our society today. They come in the form of still pictures or moving
images with sound. The learners today including you, the Generation Z learners, absorb
tons of information from printed and visual texts. You are considered as visual learners.
You spend several hours a day in social media or searching the internet for information.
The various forms of technology allow you to see multitudinous images in the internet.
The study of Brumberger (2011), however, revealed that the college students are not
adept at producing and interpreting visual communication. The 21 st century
environment requires students to be digitally and visually literate, hence there is a need
for you to learn how to analyse multimodal texts.
The analysis of visual texts stemmed from the meta-functions of language by
Michael Halliday. These meta-functions were adopted by Gunther Kress and Van
Leeuwen(2006) as they analysed visual images.
The first meta-function is the ideational or representational function. This is the
semiotic function of constructing representation of what is going on in the world. Visual
images containing symbols, comic strips, maps, and advertisements with participants
connected by means of taxonomy are examples of images showing the ideational or
representational function.
Interpersonal or interactional function refers to the connection between the
participant and the viewer. If there is gaze from the represented participant casting to
viewers, the image mood is demand, if there is no gaze, the image mood is offer.
Social Distance can be realized by the size of frame varying from very close shot to
very-long-shot, that is, the distance between represented participants and the viewers.
Oblique camera angles can show the degree of detachment between the
participants and viewers.
Textual function of images includes the informational values, salience and
framing. Information values are attached according to how elements are spatially
placed in different ‗zones‘ of an image left and right (given and new), top and bottom
(ideal and real), center and margin. Salience refers to the images that attract most
attention. The most salient subject in a photo is usually at the center. Framing
disconnects or connects elements of the image, signifying that they belong or do not
belong together.
Visual Literacy and Critical Visual Literacy
Principles and Aims of CVL
Visual literacy is reading the text whereas critical visual literacy is reading beyond
the text. Critical visual literacy is the critical examination of ―social, cultural, and
economic ‗contexts‘ of visual texts …to eliminate power relationships in society.‖ It is the
empowerment of learners to ―appreciate the aesthetic qualities of texts; analyse these
texts as sites of ideological struggle, critically negotiate meanings with problems of
visual (mis)representation, and use creative tools as instruments for self-emancipation
and social activism‖ (Young, 2014)
CVL view students as active agents interrogating different forms of visual culture
in the process of deconstructing texts, and using their creative voices to promote an
equal democratic society. Its aim is the promotion of ―social justice as it examines the
operation of texts in shaping the attitudes, beliefs and values of the individual and
group‖. It also gives emphasis on texts as sites, signs, and sights of political agency for
transformative action‖
How Does a Critical Visual Reader Look at Texts?
A critical visual reader
Analyzes texts and looks at intentions, points of view and biases.
Evaluates the texts‘ socio-political context
reads what images and passages are saying: what messages they are
suggesting, and how they are shaped to influence the attitudes, values and
beliefs of readers.
Identifies bias in words and expressions
Recognizes stereotypes in pictures and images
Understands symbols
Analyzes/ evaluates assumptions, beliefs, and practices
Questions for Discussion
1. Why do we need to be critical about the images that we encounter in our daily
2. What are the challenges that you encounter in interpreting images?
Analyze a video from You Tube by using the guide below.
Affective/ Perceptual
Compositional/ Structural
How does the image make What elements can you
you feel?
see in the
Why does it make you feel What text accompanies
this way?
the image, if any ( a
caption, a title, etc.)
What does it add to the
What other images come
How is the image framed
to mind when you see it?
or composed?
What personal relevance
What do you think lies
does it have for you, if
beyond the frame?
What does the image
From what angle or point
remind you of?
of view has the image
been taken?
Do you identify with or
relate to the image in any
way? If so, how?
Do you think the image is
positive or negative? Or
do you feel indifferent
towards it? Why?
Which parts of the image
are centrally focused?
What has been altered,
omitted from or included in
the image?
What message does the
image transmit?
Who created it?
For what purpose and in
what context?
In what forms of media will
the image be seen?
Who is the intended
audience for the image?
In what context did you
view the image?
The original context or the
another one? What is the
In how many different
ways could the image be
Are any of the images
stereotypical, idealized,
non-representative or
Analyze the print ads below as you accomplish the visual worksheet.
Visual worksheet
Sender/s of the
Medium/ mode
What the images
and words are
What the images
and words are
indicated in the
images and
words used
relations revealed
Potential impact
on the attitudes,
beliefs, and
values of the
target audience
How various
readers/ listeners/
viewers may
Lesson 3: Media Literacy
Media literacy is the ability to ―critically consume and create media‖ in order to
―better… understand the complex messages we receive from television, radio,
newspapers, magazines, books, billboards, signs, packaging, marketing materials, video
games, recorded music, the Internet and other forms of media‖ ( New Mexico Media
Literacy Project).
Basic Concepts of Media Literacy
Media construct our culture.
Our society and culture – even our perception of reality – is shaped by the
information and images we receive via the media. A few generations ago, our culture‘s
storytellers were people – family, friends, and others in our community. For many people
today, the most powerful storytellers are television, movies, music, video games, and
the Internet.
Media messages affect our thoughts, attitudes and actions.
All of us are affected by advertising, news, movies, pop music, video games, and
other forms of media.
Media use “the language of persuasion.‖
All media messages try to persuade us to believe or do something. News,
documentary films, and nonfiction books all claim to be telling the truth. Advertising tries
to get us to buy products. Novels and TV dramas go to great lengths to appear realistic.
To do this, they use specific techniques (like flattery, repetition, fear, and humor) we call
―the language of persuasion.‖
Media construct fantasy worlds.
While fantasy can be pleasurable and entertaining, it can also be harmful.
Movies, TV shows, and music videos sometimes inspire people to do things that are
unwise, anti-social, or even dangerous. At other times, media can inspire our
imagination. Advertising constructs a fantasy world where all problems can be solved
with a purchase. Media literacy helps people to recognize fantasy and constructively
integrate it with reality.
No one tells the whole story.
Every media maker has a point of view. Every good story highlights some
information and leaves out the rest. Often, the effect of a media message comes not
only from what is said, but from what part of the story is not told. Media messages
contain ―texts‖ and ―subtexts.‖ The text is the actual words, pictures and/or sounds in a
media message. The subtext is the hidden and underlying meaning of the message.
Media messages reflect the values and viewpoints.
Everyone has a point of view. Our values and viewpoints influence our choice of
words, sounds and images we use to communicate through media. This is true for all
media makers, from a pre-schooler‘s crayon drawing to a media conglomerate‘s TV
news broadcast.
Individuals construct their own meanings from media.
Although media makers attempt to convey specific messages, people receive
and interpret them differently, based on their own prior knowledge and experience,
their values, and their beliefs. This means that people can create different subtexts from
the same piece of media. All meanings and interpretations are valid and should be
Media messages can be decoded.
By ―deconstructing‖ media, we can figure out who created the message, and
why. We can identify the techniques of persuasion being used and recognize how
media makers are trying to influence us. We notice what parts of the story are not being
told, and how we can become better informed.
1. How influential are the forms of media to people?
2. As language learners, how do you strengthen your media literacy?
3. What are the benefits and adverse effects of social media in your field?
Examine the posters and answer the questions that follow.
Who is this advertisement targeting?
What is the subtext (underlying meaning) of the ad?
How is this ad attempting to persuade the consumer?
Is this a healthy and/or unhealthy media message?
What related stories are NOT told by this media example?
Lesson 4: Critical Listening
Listening is an essential skill that you need in your academic and professional life.
In class, you listen to lectures and group discussions. You may be required to attend
meetings, seminars and conferences. Different professions require listening skills.
Investigators listen to witnesses; nurses and physicians listen to patients; teachers listen to
students; broadcasters listen to interviewees; human resource managers listen to
applicants and employees. Active listening in managerial communication can be very
helpful in creating better work environments (Jahromi, Tabatabee, Abdar, and Rajabi,
2016). Developing your listening skills will surely make you efficient workers in the future.
Critical listening requires you to not only exercise skills to comprehend information
but also to make assessments and decisions about what you hear (Angell, 2007). When
you listen critically, you evaluate and analyse the credibility, accuracy, and validity of
messages. This type of listening usually involves persuasive information. You must
recognize fallacies and sort out various facts from opinions. Listening also requires
critical thinking—you need to balance the argument you hear with your own
expectations, beliefs and viewpoints.
As a student, you are exposed to many kinds of messages. You receive
messages conveying academic information, institutional rules, instructions, and
warnings; you also receive messages through political discourse, advertisements, gossip,
jokes, song lyrics, text messages, invitations, web links, and all other manners of
communication. Your ability to distinguish which messages are false and misleading will
help you in being cautious in evaluating the messages you hear.
According to Spears (2010), critical listeners are:
1. Engaged – they deliberately seek understanding as they listen.
2. Fully Attentive – they resist forming a response before the speaker finishes speaking.
3. Systematically Analytical – they apply the Elements of Reasoning to information,
claims, and ideas.
4. Focused on Clarity – they ask follow-up questions until they achieve understanding.
5. Responsive – they paraphrase the speaker‘s statements to demonstrate
6. Empathetic – they try to understand the speaker‘s needs, assumptions, values, and
7. Collaborative – they seek ways to find value in the combination of ideas and input.
A competent listener:
An ineffective listener:
1. uses eye contact appropriately.
2. is attentive and alert to a speaker‘s
verbal and nonverbal behavior.
3. is patient and does not interrupt, waiting
for the speaker to finish.
4. is responsive, using verbal and
nonverbal expressions.
5. asks questions in a nonthreatening tone.
6. paraphrases, restates or summarizes
what the speaker says.
7. provides constructive verbal and
nonverbal feedback.
8. is empathic, makes an effort to
understand the speaker.
9. demonstrates interest in the speaker as
a person.
10. demonstrates a caring attitude and is
willing to listen.
11. does not criticize; is non-judgmental.
12. is open-minded.
1. interrupts the speaker; demonstrates
2. does not make eye contact; allows his
or her eyes to wander.
3. is distracted and/or fidgety; does not
pay attention to the speaker.
4. is not interested in the speaker.
5. gives the speaker little or no verbal
and/or nonverbal feedback.
6. changes the subject.
7. is judgmental.
8. is close-minded.
9. talks too much.
10. is self-preoccupied.
11. gives unwanted advice.
12. is too busy to listen.
Andrew Wolvin and Carolyn Coakley (1982, 9) identified five types of listening:
1. Discriminative listening allows individuals to separate fact, which is
provable information, from opinion, which is more subjective and
2. Comprehensive listening is necessary for individuals to understand the message.
This includes differentiating between vocal sounds in order to comprehend the
emotional content of the message.
3. Critical or evaluative listening is used to evaluate a message before
accepting or rejecting it.
4. Therapeutic listening allows the individual to listen without judging. The
purpose of therapeutic listening is to help the speaker change or progress in
some way.
5. Appreciative listening allows individuals to listen for entertainment or
enjoyment, such as when we listen to poetry or music.
Not all types of listening are equally effective. Active listening, also known as
reflective listening, is the skill of listening closely and reflecting back the information to
the speaker. In Developing the Fine Art of Listening, Hal Ritter Jr. and Patricia Wilson
(2006) explain that when engaged in active listening, the listener mirrors or reflects the
information by re-stating or paraphrasing what the speaker has said, followed by a
question to check for the accuracy of what we thought we heard. Such listening
behavior greatly reduces miscommunication and errors in perception by clarifying the
message and creating common ground.
Relational or dialogic listening, also a type of active listening, takes into account
the whole listening environment and seeks to enhance personal relationships.
Relationships are built through conversations, and relational or dialogic listening seeks
to learn about and from the other individual in the relationship in order to further
enhance mutual understanding and communication. Other scholars extend the
definition of relational listening to relational communication, where listening and
speaking occur simultaneously in face-to-face human interaction (Eisenberg &
Goodall, 1993, 107). The relational model of communication recommends that even if
you believe you have learned all there is to know about another individual in a
relationship with you, you should be open to modifying your assumptions and
conclusions based on new information acquired in each communicative exchange
(Bromwell, 2006, 182).
Questions for Discussion
1. What are the factors that can inhibit listening?
2. How can critical listening help you in your profession?
3. How will you characterize passive and active listeners?
Your manager has just requested that you attend a seminar- training for three days.
Upon your return, you will be expected to share insights and strategies you learned with
the rest of the staff. Prepare a list of actions that you will take to prepare yourself for
active listening during the seminar and for your presentation of the information to your
Listen to the TED Talk on Five Ways to Listen Better from this site:
https://www.ted.com/talks/julian_treasure_5_ways_to_listen_better?language=en#t10975 and answer the questions below:
1. According to the speaker, how much time do we spend listening?
2. What do we usually listen to, and what don‘t we pay attention to?
3. What are the reasons why we are losing our listening?
4. What are the five ways to listen better?
At the end of the unit, you are expected to:
1. present a topic following the strategies on effective oral presentation;
2. determine appropriate technology for specific communication contexts; and
3. evaluate websites based on a list of criteria.
Lesson 1: Presentations as Modes of Communication
The common mode we use in conveying our message or ideas is oral
communication. At school, you engage in numerous speaking activities such as oral
presentations. As future professionals, you must be skilled not only in writing but in
presenting ideas orally as well. You need to plan ahead to prepare your visual aids
which include a power point presentation where you apply your skills on computer
According to Woolever (2007), engineers, scientists, and others who work in
business and industry frequently give presentations at business meetings, seminars,
conferences, trade shows, public hearings, and corporate training sessions.
Types of Presentations
1. Explanatory presentations: explaining complex technology to a group unfamiliar
with the material. For example, a scientist might explain the effects of a new
drug to a hospital staff or to an interested lay audience.
2. Descriptive presentations: describing action taken or project phases completed.
For example, an engineer might describe for the client steps taken in the first
phase of an environmental clean- up project.
3. Persuasive presentations: persuading an audience of the value or safety of a
product, technology, or idea. For example, a marketing manager might need to
convince potential customers to trust—and then to purchase—a newly
developed product.
Planning and Researching
When you plan your presentation, you have to consider major factors such as
audience, method of delivery (including the visual aids), and venue. All these will add
dimensions to the planning process. You can organize ideas about your presentation
into a planning grid.
The structure of an oral presentation can often follow a simple four-part plan:
Question and answer period
Introduction Strategy
The introduction is key to connecting with the audience and breaking the ice a
bit. Think ahead about ways you might get your audience's attention. Several questions
might give you some ideas: Why is your topic important to your listeners? How will it
benefit them? What are your credentials to explain the topic to them? How do your
interests and theirs connect? Providing answers to these questions at the beginning of
your talk will put the audience at ease and indicate to them that what you say is
specifically relevant to them.
Set the Agenda
Explain to the audience at the outset what you're going to talk about and how
you plan to organize the discussion. If you have organized your talk into three sections,
say so. If you plan to cover several key points, predict them up front. Setting listener
expectations in this way relaxes the audience and gives them a sense that you know
exactly where you're going and they can trust you to take them there. You might also
want to suggest at the beginning that you will take questions during your talk, or that
you will field questions and comments at the end of your presentation—or both.
Make Eye Contact
From the first moment, be sure you look directly at your listeners—all of them, not
just one section of the room. Speakers who make frequent eye contact with their
audience exude confidence and keep their listeners' attention much more easily. Try
not to stare at your notes, raising your head only occasionally to punctuate a point.
Presenting the Body
The "meat" of the presentation is the body—the middle section where you
present your subject matter in a clear fashion, where members of your audience are
listening, not reading, and therefore do not have the luxury of rereading or reflecting on
the material at their own pace. You thus have to present the information in ways that
allow listeners to understand it without the benefit of studying it. Here are a few
guidelines for presenting the body of your talk effectively:
Emphasize Structure
Keep listeners oriented to the organization of your material by using cues: first,
second, third... or next, finally ... or for example, in contrast, consequently..., and so
forth. These transitional cues give the audience a sense of direction and allow them to
see more clearly how the points you make fit together.
Summarize Frequently
Every time you shift topics or move to a new component of your presentation,
help the listeners follow you by summarizing briefly what you've just said, and predict
what's coming next. For example, you might say, "As you can see, then, the problems
are threefold: cost, availability, and quality. The next step is to find the best solution.. . ."
These summaries act as mental checkpoints for the audience and permit them to focus
on your ideas in clear, concise units
Use Visual Aids
Because people comprehend material in a variety of ways, it's important to
provide visuals to support the words you're speaking.
Relate Material to Audience's Needs
As is true with any effective communication, you need to continually illustrate
why the information you're presenting is useful for the specific listeners. The more you
can tie your points to something the audience is familiar with, the more interested they
will be and the more they will remember what you have to say.
Use Simple, Direct Language
Remember that the audience is not able to read and reflect on your subject, so
you need to use words they can understand quickly and easily. That doesn't mean you
should be simplistic in your language, but it does mean that you should use only terms
that are concise and clear to the majority of your listeners. Don't use 50-cent words
when 25-cent ones will do.
Vary your Sentences
Just as in prose, variety lends drama and creates interest. Convey Your Interest.
Vary your tone and volume to show genuine interest in your material and your
Pace Yourself
Slow down. Speak at a pace that allows your listeners to follow your points
without the frustration of trying to keep up with you. (It's the rare speaker that moves
through a presentation too slowly, but check yourself to make sure you create an
effective balance in your delivery between too slow and too fast.) This is one aspect of
your talk where practice is essential. If you can practice in front of a trial audience, so
much the better.
Closing Techniques
The closing is the point in your presentation where you have a chance to leave a
lasting impression. Debate teams are always given the advice to save their "zingers" for
the end because that will impress the audience (and the judges) most. In oral
presentations given at companies or conferences, the technique still works. If you want
to improve your chances for memorable closings, follow these guidelines:
Restate the Main Points
Although summarizing your main points once again may seem redundant to
you, it may not seem so to your audience. This is the only time you have to focus all of
your information for the audience in a way that they can comprehend easily. The
earlier summaries you have included in the body of your talk have been only partial.
Outline a plan for the next step. How should the audience use the information
you've given them? Answering this question emphasizes the usefulness of your material,
and it also gives your listeners a sense of direction. They are more likely to remember
and act on your ideas if you have suggested ways to do so.
End Strongly and Positively
Finish your presentation with enthusiasm for your material and a strong final
statement of its benefits. Be natural; if you suddenly change your tone to blatant
marketing language, the audience will feel manipulated. Let the strength of the rest of
your presentation work for you here. End firmly and positively without the need for a
sales pitch.
Handling the Question and Answer Period
After you have finished your presentation, it is customary to ask if the audience
has any questions. You may have fielded questions earlier in your talk, but it helps to
save some time at the end for people to respond to the entire presentation. If no one
has questions, then a simple "thank you" will serve as a nice ending. But if there are
questions, you need to know how to handle them.
Take Questions from a Variety of People. Don't focus on just one questioner and devote
most of your time there. Let as many people as possible speak.
Indicate When You Don't Know the Answers
If you are asked a question you can't answer, avoid the temptation to fudge a
reply. Instead, simply say that you don't know and turn the question back to the
audience. Perhaps someone else will be able to supply the answer. You may want to
indicate how the questioners can find out the information. Point them in the right
direction. If you can reasonably do so, commit to getting an answer for a questioner at
a later time (and keep the commitment).
Remain Even-Tempered
Occasionally, you may find audience members responding to you with hostility
or goading you to react emotionally. Don't rise to the bait. You will be more impressive if
you keep your cool and answer such hecklers with calmness rather than anger.
Sometimes humor at your own expense deflects such disruptive comments, but be
careful not to direct any humorous remarks at the questioner. Doing so may be
interpreted as making fun of the person.
End the Question Period Appropriately
Keep in mind that some people like to ask a lot of questions. You need to watch
the clock and not let the question period drift to the point where the majority of listeners
become restless. You may be cutting into the time of the next speaker, or into the busy
schedule of your audience who need to get off to their respective activities.
Designing Visuals
Types of Visual Aids
There are two types of visuals used to supplement speeches and presentations:
text visuals and graphic visuals. Good presentations contain a combination of both,
and simplicity is the key to designing them effectively.
1. Text Visuals
Text visuals consist of words or phrases that help the audience follow the flow of
ideas. They can summarize or preview major points or signal major shifts in thought.
Many presentations begin with text visuals. Typically, the first is the equivalent of a title
page: it announces the subject and the speaker. The second lists the three or four major
points that will be covered, providing a road map of what's to come. The remaining
ones emphasize the transitions between the main points— somewhat like the headings
in a written report. As a rule, your text visuals will be most effective when they contain
no more than six lines with a maximum of six words per line. Type them in large, clear
type, using uppercase and lowercase letters (not all uppercase) with extra white space
between the lines of type.
2. Graphic Visuals
You can use a variety of graphic visuals in an oral presentation the same way
you use graphics in a written document: from line, pie, bar, and organization charts to
diagrams, maps, drawings, tables, and flowcharts. However, make sure the graphics
you use for your talk are simplified versions of those that appear in written work.
Eliminate anything that is not absolutely essential, because the audience needs to
focus on the main point of the visual, not the decorative or explanatory material. As in
written documents, always label graphics with clear captions, but keep those simple,
Guidelines for Preparing PowerPoint Presentations
Worthington and Jefferson (2018) gave the following guidelines for use with presentation
software such as PowerPoint:
◾ Select landscape layout for your slides. It gives you longer lines for your text.
◾ Give each slide a title or heading.
◾ Select a font that the audience can easily read from a distance, such as Times New Roman Bold or
Arial Black.
◾ Use serif fonts to improve readability. Because sans serif fonts present a cleaner, crisper image,
use these fonts for titles of slides.
◾ Choose a font size that is readable and that suggests the importance of elements on the slide.
Generally, these sizes are appropriate:
• Titles: 24–36 points
• Other text: 18–24 points
• Source notes: 14–16 points
◾ Capitalize the first letter of important words in titles of slides. Words that are in all uppercase
letters are difficult to read.
◾ In bulleted lists, capitalize only the initial letter of the first word (and, of course, proper nouns
and proper adjectives).
◾ Use the Notes section as a reminder of your next point; specific facts, figures, or quotations;
cues when someone else will be advancing the slide; or reminders such as “Make eye
◾ If you have clip art or an image that supports the text on a slide, place it in the lower right
◾ Keep slides simple and uncluttered. Use phrases and keywords and limit the number of lines
on a slide to six or fewer.
◾ If you use transition effects between slides, make the effect meaningful.
◾ On your speaker’s notes pages, number the slides so you can quickly move to a particular
slide when someone asks a question.
◾ Do not preset timings in your slides. If you advance the slides manually, you can pace yourself.
Web Based Presentations
Online presentation software is a cloud-based platform where you can login and
create presentations in the cloud. Unlike PowerPoint and other desktop applications,
there is no download required and you work on your presentations right online.
Because online presentation software is in the cloud, and an advanced digital
technology, there are many benefits over traditional desktop presentation software:
Unlimited file sizes. There are no storage issues in the cloud. This means you can
make a presentation as large as you‘d like with videos, high-resolution images,
infographics, GIFs and more. If you‘ve ever created a massive PowerPoint deck,
gone to save it and had the whole thing crash, you know what a huge benefit this
is. Not to mention the ability to use as much rich multimedia as you want, to make
your presentation more visual and appealing to audiences.
Easy sharing. Because you‘re building your presentation online, you‘re also storing it
online, meaning you don‘t have to send a huge PDF or zip drive file. You can simply
send a link when your presentation is ready to be viewed. Not only is this easy for
you to do, but it‘s easy for the recipient to click on it and instantly view your
Analytics. As with anything stored in the cloud, online software allows you to see
advanced analytics so you can view when your presentation has been viewed, for
how long and on what slides. You also can receive real-time notifications to know
when someone has clicked on your URL to view your presentation.
Jones, (2020) summarized the software for different online presentation as follows:
Which presentation software works best for...
Best For...
PowerPoint, Google
Slides and KeyNote
(Mac use only)
Presentation slides
both in person and
Most familiar
format with
user and
embed media
Oversimplifies a topic,
and limits
preparation. KeyNote
is only for Mac
Quick and easy
presentation slide
library of
layout design,
can download
to a pdf
Limited amount of
templates for free
Alternative to
standard slideshow
due to non-linear
Present on
Can only use
templates, can cause
a dizzy effect with
and zooming
presentation in
person and online
embed media
motion and zooming
of slides
banners and
inforgraphics, cards
Easy to use,
many custom
Can be time
consuming to design
presentations, visual
media, infographics
Easy to use,
can create
custom media
to embed in
websites or
Best for online
presenting because
of interactive features
Adobe Spark
Social graphics,
web pages, videos,
interactive stories
Easy to use,
web and
Best for online
presenting, video
creation limit of 30
Easy to use,
many custom
Can be time
consuming to design
When you are presenting online, maintaining your audience‘s attention presents
a unique set of challenges. What often works in in-person presentations – FASTER,
BIGGER, LOUDER! – doesn‘t always translate to a virtual audience where the name of
the game is Engagement.
Understanding how to keep your audience engaged, and working with the
challenges of the medium and the technology, requires some strategic but necessary
adjustments in the design and delivery of your online presentation. Be sure to find the
right conference app as well.
Here are ways to ensure your audience keeps their eyes on your web presentation
according to Hansen (2016).
1. Increase your visibility.
The easiest and most effective way to increase your visibility is to use a webcam.
If you‘re one of those camera shy individuals, at least have a simple slide with your
photo and credentials on it which you can show when you open and close, as well as
during Q&A. The more you can make yourself visible -- and not just a disembodied
voice -- the more engaged your audience will be.
2. Leverage your voice.
When you remove the physical component from your presentation, your voice
carries a much larger load. A monotone, unclear or hard-to-hear voice is magnified in
the virtual world. As your primary communication tool, you need to make sure you are
in your best possible voice.
Start by recording yourself and analyzing your strengths and weaknesses, then
get to work. There is plenty of advice online about how to improve various vocal
issues. At the least, do some simple warm-ups before your presentation. Just like a
great vocal artist, your money is where your mouth is, so don‘t treat it lightly.
3 Embrace the pause.
Under the cover of invisibility, online audiences can be a very passive lot. As a
result, presenters have a tendency to go into long monologues that only further
discourage participation and encourage tune-out. Make friends with the pause.
It can be a great tool for giving your audience a chance to process what you‘ve
said, ask a question, or make a comment. There are other strategic uses for the pause
as well. A pause before revealing something important can build anticipation, while
one at the end of a sentence can reinforce a key point.
4. Start on time.
Between connectivity and log-on issues, arrival times are rarely consistent among
audience members. As the host, how do you avoid frustrating the people who are on
time without penalizing the latecomers?
It is suggested that you have two openings. The first opening is a ―soft‖ opening,
designed to get your audience engaged without revealing too much.
For example, a poll that your on-time audience can answer which leads into
your topic. Whatever your soft opening is, make sure that it is a) interesting, b) relevant
and c) not vital to your audience‘s understanding of the topic.
The second opening is your hard opening, reserved for when everyone is in
attendance. This double opening is a bit more work, but pays off big by keeping
everyone happy.
5. Plan interaction.
In order to keep your audience engaged, you need to build some interaction
into your presentation. With the average focused attention span of humans hovering
around five minutes, sporadic attempts at interaction are not going to cut it.
Get your audience interacting before they hit the attention free fall by planning
some form of interaction every 4 to 5 minutes. This can take many forms, like a question,
a poll, or a white-boarding session.
Whatever you choose, just make sure you plan and prepare ahead of time so
interaction doesn‘t fall by the wayside with everything else you have to keep track of.
6. Visually reinforce key points.
You can get away with using fewer slides during an in-person presentation
because it‘s easier to gauge your audience‘s comprehension by their expressions or
body language.
Places where you would naturally stop often get overlooked as on-line presenters
mistake audience silence for understanding.
To make sure you don‘t leave your audience in the dust of confusion, prepare a
summary slide with key points covered after each section and stop to recap and take
7. Create word pictures.
In a virtual presentation, your words have to work even harder than in a live
presentation. Think about creating pictures with your words.
For instance, when describing something, use words that engage the senses.
(e.g., ―it looks like a sunset,‖ or ―it feels like a piece of crushed velvet.‖) Be specific and
avoid broad generalities. (e.g., ―it weighs 510 pounds‖ as opposed to ―it‘s really big.‖)
Use personal stories or interesting comparisons. Listen to how your favorite
podcasters use their voice and descriptive words to draw you in.
8. Simplify your slides.
Have you ever decided not to watch a movie on that little airplane screen
because it would be too hard to follow? The same holds true for a web presentation.
Since you have no idea what size screen your audience is viewing your
presentation on (or what their connection is like), design your slides to work well on a
smaller screen. Small screens can multiply already busy graphics. Animations can
appear jerky or out of sync with your talk track.
Keep your graphics simple and crisp and limit your animations to simple fades
and transitions and you can avoid alienating any audience members.
9. Use purposeful movement
There is an area of the brain called the limbic system that is highly sensitive to
movement. Purposeful movement, i.e., changing slides or using your web tools to guide
your audience‘s eyes to different areas on screen works in your favor. Random or
chaotic movement, i.e., jerky animations, a racing mouse, or rapid transitions work
against you. Wield the power of movement purposefully and wisely.
10. End the presentation on time.
While this applies to in-person presentations as well, ending on time plays even
greater importance in a web presentation where it‘s easy for people to drop off or tune
out. Make it very clear upfront that you plan to stop at a specific time. When that
designated time arrives, deliver your closing and take any additional questions off-line
or schedule another call.
Keeping your virtual audience engaged is no small task. Understanding where
and how you are at risk for tune out and making some adjustments in your presentation
will help you achieve your goal and keep you from talking to yourself.
Questions for Discussion
1. Why should we consider the technology we have to use in presentations.
2. How important is the introduction of your presentation?
3. How can you maintain your audience‘ attention in face to face
presentation and online presentation?
You have been set the task to speak about the history of space exploration,
including key individuals and major historic events. Write a short introduction to
the topic using the prompts below to organize your thoughts.
Refer to a local event or a recent event in the news
Tell a personal story
Read a quote
Ask a question
Refer to something that just happened in class
Lesson 2: Using Technology to Communicate
We are on the fourth industrial revolution and technology has altered the way
we work, live and relate with one another. As digital learners, you have been exposed
to various modes of communication technologies. The cellular phone allows you to talk
to someone, to send and receive e-mail, to surf the internet and even to download
music, videos or movies. Smart phones also allow online banking and remote control of
computers and other devices at work and at home.
The issue of communicating using technology is one you should be very familiar
with by now. One area of communication that is common to us is communicating with
people from around the word. The Internet, often called the Net, is a system of
computer networks that links computers from around the world in one large network.
Internet users can send email messages, chat with one another, post and read
messages on electronic bulletin boards, and gain access to databases and websites in
almost any place in the world.
Instant messaging, or ―chat,‖ is real-time communication via the Internet. Instant
messaging can be used for chat rooms, but it can also allow two people to
communicate with one another over the internet or an online service.
Electronic commerce
One way that technology is transforming the way we communicate with each
other around the world is with the advent of electronic commerce. Electronic
commerce (E-commerce) is buying and selling merchandise and services over the
Internet. Many retail establishments have set up websites to advertise their goods and
services and to allow consumers to order these items from the comfort of their own
Managed Travel
The Internet is a valuable tool for travellers who need to schedule trips and to
book reservations. Instead of relying on travel agents, you can get on the web, use an
online booking agent, and book a plane trip, set up hotel reservations, and reserve a
rental car. You can also make restaurant reservations in larger cities. Similarly, the
Internet enables you to order tickets for music concerts, amusement parks, and sporting
events. Before you leave for your trip, you can use the Internet to research your
destination and even create a map of each of the cities you will be visiting.
Technology and Group Communication
Group communication is a key component of any organization. Often it is done
by conducting on-site meetings with project teams, staff members and other groups.
But technology has changed the way group communication occurs. Now, we have
software that enables multiple users to access the same document at the same time
and mark it for edits or other changes. You can also use group- based projectmanagement software to send project assignments to team members, then track the
assignments through completion.
Group or Collaborative Tools
Asynchronous Communication
Asynchronous means sending the communication at one time and the receivers
retrieve or access it at their convenience. Email is an example of an asynchronous
Synchronous Communication
Synchronous communication means at the same time, or real-time. In
synchronous distance education, teachers and learners are connected at the same
time and communicate in real time. This is much like going to class where the teacher
and students are physically present.
A teleconference is where the participants are at two or more locations and can
participate in a conference without traveling; it is a form of synchronous
communication. Teleconference can be an audioconference or a videoconference. In
addition to businesses, medical facilities are using teleconferencing nowadays.
We are beginning to witness another transformation of the workplace. In the preindustrial era, workers lived mostly in isolation. The industrial era brought people
together into cities and factories to work in a structured environment. The information
age is returning workers to their homes where they are physically isolated, yet
connected via modern technology to the virtual office.
Within this decade, it is predicted that many changes will occur regarding who is
using technology to get their jobs done. Technology will permeate almost every
business practice and drive enormous strategic and practical progress. Gone will be
most secretarial and administrative jobs. Also, managers will have to focus on
measuring efficiency and productivity rather than on tracking a group of employees
and tasks.
Telework means using telecommunications to work wherever you need to in
order to satisfy client needs. This could mean from a home office, a telework center, a
satellite office, a client‘s office, an airport lounge, a hotel room, the local Starbucks, or
from your office to a colleague ten floors below the same building
The Digital Workplace
The digital workplace is widely acknowledged for optimizing workers‘
productivity. The digital workplace breaks down barriers between people, information,
and processes, thereby enabling workers to do their jobs more efficiently and
Software Tools
Business Applications
Service Provided
Provides employees
access to online
Provides inexpensive and
fast way to communicate
Provides effective
information sharing
Reduces time and
increase efficiency of
Provides effective
collaboration between
employees and customers
Workplace Mobility
Provides employees
access to tools away from
the office
Workplace Solutions
Human Resources
Customer Relationship
Enterprise Resource
Help desk
Accounting & Payroll
 Contract Management
 Instant messaging
 Mobile messaging
 E-mail
 Blogging
 E-mail Marketing
 Portals and Intranet
 Chat-based
 Video conferencing
 Voice over IP (VOIP)
 Helpdesk
 Word processing
 Presentation software
 Spreadsheet
 Document management
 Backup storage
 Employee time tracking
 Survey and campaign
 Online meeting
 Team rooms
 Web conferencing
 File sharing
Mobile and smart phone
 Laptop and tablet
 Home office
Evaluating Websites
Undoubtedly, when you are asked to present in class or in the workplace, you
use the internet as your source of information. With the abundance of information
available, you must be discriminating in your information search. You must examine the
reliability of the information you are searching. Here‘s a sample comparison of two
websites that you may consider.
Title of web page you are
World Factbook-Turkey
Title of web page you are
World Factbook-Turkey
U.S. Government Site
__X_. gov/mil
Publisher or Domain Name:
U.S. Central Intelligence Agency
(CIA)—makes sense
Travel Site
____. gov/mil
Publisher or Domain Name:
______name: CIA staff
____Name: no author listed
Is there a date?
Is it current or old?
Credentials on this
3. Look for these
indicators of quality
Are sources well-documented?
Is the information complete?
Is it altered or made up?
Are there links to other
sources? Do they work?
Date: May 2017
Current enough? Yes
Date: _____
Current enough? _______
Good documentation
Seems complete, thorough
Little documentation on sources
General information with less
detail. No negative information.
Links to hotels, car rental,
tourism sites
Are other viewpoints included?
Is the information biased?
4. What do others say
about the site?
Who links to this site?
Mostly information, facts
Seems like only positive
information and viewpoints
Many or few? Many links
Opinions of it? Seem favorable
Look up the author on a search
5. Does it all add up?
Why was this page put out on
Many or few? Some
Opinions of it? No negative
opinions found
___X_Inform (facts, data)
__X_ Inform (facts, data)
1. Look at the URL:
Personal page or site?
What type of domain is it? Is it
appropriate for the content?
Who is the publisher? Does the
publisher make sense? Does it
correspond to the name of the
2. Scan the page
Who wrote the page?
Links to other Factbook sources,
Not other sites
the Web?
Possibly ironic? Satire or
Is the information as good as
other sources?
Seems like a good source.
Includes positive and negative
Okay for basic facts but does
not provide any negative
Web Page Information—Evaluation
Thinking about the site:
Who is responsible for the information on the website?
When was the site last updated?
When was the information on the site last written?
Does the information seem current or out or date?
Has it won any awards? (Is there a link that gives information about the award?)
Thinking about the author of the site:
Who is the author of the information on this site?
What information can you find out about the author?
Does the author seem to have the authority or knowledge to write about this
Does the site provide a section with information on the author or organization
that published the site?
Thinking about the audience for the site:
Does the site seem to have a specific audience?
Does the site have advertisements? If so, what kind?
If there are advertisements, do they tell you something about the intended
audience for the site?
Thinking about information found on the site:
Has the information been published someplace other than the Internet?
Is the information clear and easy to understand?
If the information is controversial, is more than one point of view presented?
Can you tell what information on the site is factual and what is opinion?
Is quoted information clearly identified and properly cited?
Overall, this site:
__________Would help me a lot with my assignment
__________Links me to other sites that are helpful
__________Looks helpful but the information is too technical or hard to understand
__________Is more an advertisement than information I can use
__________Seems to be just one person‘s or group‘s opinion or may not be reliable
Questions for Discussion
1. With the availability of information in the internet, how would you evaluate the
reliability of information?
2. Which among the collaborative tools do you consider very useful?
3. Do you believe that a digital workplace is effective?
Assume that you need to make travel arrangements for your supervisor. She will
be travelling to South Korea for a sales convention. Using the Internet, find at least three
options for air travel, hotel reservations, and car rental. Remember that you want to be
frugal but not cheap. Prepare the information in a table.
Air Travel
Hotel Reservations
Car Rental
At the end of the unit, you are expected to:
1. discuss the guidelines in creating effective communication materials;
2. explain procedures for communicating in the workplace; and
3. prepare communication materials related to your field of specialization.
Lesson 1: Workplace Communication
There is no denying the importance of communication in the workplace,
considering the fact that in an organization people belonging to different social and
professional backgrounds come together to work for the same goals. Often it is seen
that administrators do not realize the importance of communication at work and thus
do not convey their ideas, organizational goals, vision, etc. very clearly. When
administrators in an organization are unable to create an environment which promotes
open and clear communication, it can have negative repercussions on the work
culture and the employee productivity.
The importance of effective workplace communication are discussed below:
Creates job satisfaction- Organizations which encourage an open and easy
correspondence between seniors and subordinates face lesser employee
turnover. If the work environment is friendly where the subordinates are
encouraged to communicate their ideas to their administrators regarding workrelated issues, and their feedback is given due consideration, it motivates the
employees to work better and makes them feel valued in the organization. Thus,
effective communication in the workplace helps in building loyalty and trust
which eventually attributes to greater job satisfaction.
Lesser conflicts- Open communication in the workplace can help prevent and
resolve many conflicts. Workplace conflicts are easily resolved through open and
clear communication and mutual discussions; this can lead to personal and
professional growth.
Increases productivity- Effective communication at work is the most important
issue for the success and failure of an organization. Every organization has a set
of clearly defined goals, objectives and vision. If an administrator is clear in
his/her communication, the subordinates will know exactly what the organization
wants and thus, will be able to deliver the same to the best of their abilities. Thus,
the importance of communication skills can be judged from the fact that it leads
to better deliverance of work, increasing workplace productivity.
Formation of relationships- Open communication, whether between the
employees and administrators or between the management and employees,
leads to the formation of better personal and professional relationships. This
makes the employees feel genuinely cared for and valued, and they are more
likely to remain loyal to the organization. This creates a friendly environment and
promotes a better working relationship which is conducive to the work.
Proper utilization of resources- If an organization faces problems, crisis and
conflicts due to miscommunication between the staff members, it causes
unnecessary delays in the daily work. This leads to wastage of resources and
lowers the overall work productivity. Thus, an environment of good
communication is a must for any organization to better utilize its resources and
increase productivity.
Each of us belongs to several different organizations. For example, you may
belong to one or more business organizations, perhaps as an employee, supervisor, or
even investor. As a student you are a member of an educational organization. You
may also belong to a church, student club, and community service organizations, and,
of course, we are all members of local, state, and national government organizations.
In short, our workplace is one of many organizations to which we belong. In other
words, organizations are social collectives, or groups of people, in which activities are
coordinated to achieve both individual and collective goals.
Being communicatively competent in the workplace involves understanding
how the context of the organization influences communication processes and how the
symbolic nature of communication differentiates it from other forms of organizational
behavior. We define organizational communication as the ways in which groups of
people both maintain structure and order through their symbolic interactions and allow
individual actors the freedom to accomplish their goals. This definition recognizes that
communication is the primary tool to influence organizations and gain access to
organizational resources. To better understand key characteristics of workplace
communication, you should recognize that there are different types of organizations
and different types of communication networks within organizations. (Pearson, Nelson&
Harter (2011).
Communication Networks
Competent workplace communicators understand that the workplace
comprises multiple communication networks. Communication networks are patterns of
relationships through which information flows in an organization. Stohl (1995) describes
communication networks as capturing ―the tapestry of relationships—the complex web
of affiliations among individuals and organizations as they are woven through the
collaborative threads of communication‖ (p. 18). Communication networks emerge in
organizations based on formal and informal communication (Stohl & Stohl, 2005).
Formal communication consists of messages that follow prescribed channels of
communication throughout the organization. The most common way of depicting
formal communication networks is with organizational charts. Organizational charts
provide clear guidelines as to who is responsible for a given task and which employees
are responsible for others‘ performance. Organizational charts demonstrate that
communication can flow in several directions: downward, upward, and horizontally.
Downward communication occurs whenever superiors initiate messages to
subordinates. Ideally, downward communication should include such things as job
instructions, job rationale, policy and procedures, performance feedback, and
motivational appeals. Messages flowing from subordinates to superiors are labelled
upward communication. Obviously, effective decision making depends on timely,
accurate, and complete information traveling upward from subordinates. Messages
between members of an organization with equal power are labelled horizontal
Downward communication comes after upward communications have been
successfully established. This type of communication is needed in an organization to:
Transmit vital information
Give instructions
Encourage 2-way discussion
Announce decisions
Seek cooperation
Provide motivation
Boost morale
Increase efficiency
Obtain feedback
Upward Communication
Upward communication is the flow of information from subordinates to superiors,
or from employees to management. Without upward communication, management
works in a vacuum, not knowing if messages have been received properly, or if other
problems exist in the organization.
Upward Communication is a means for staff to:
O Exchange information
O Offer ideas
O Express enthusiasm
O Achieve job satisfaction
O Provide feedback
Horizontal communication is important to organizational success when used to
coordinate tasks, solve problems, share information, and resolve conflict. Horizontal
communication receives much more attention in participatory organizational structures
in which employees have more opportunity to formally participate in decision making
(such as quality circles or autonomous work teams).
Horizontal communication normally involves coordinating information, and
allows people with the same or similar rank in an organization to cooperate or
Horizontal Communication is essential for:
O Solving problems
O Accomplishing tasks
O Improving teamwork
O Building goodwill
O Boosting efficiency
Informal communication is generally considered to be any interaction that does
not generally follow the formal structure of the organization but emerges out of natural
social interaction among organization members. Whereas formal communication
consists of messages the organization recognizes as official, informal messages do not
follow official lines. The concept of emergent organizational networks represents the
informal, naturally occurring patterns of communication relationships in organizations
(Susskind, Schwartz, Richards, & Johnson, 2005).
Competent Workplace Communication
Clearly, the ability to perceive accurately, use verbal and nonverbal symbols with
precision, and listen carefully are skills that benefit workplace.
When people engage in communication behaviors intended to create
perceptions of psychological closeness with others, they are enacting immediacy.
Immediacy can be both verbal and nonverbal. Smiling, reducing physical distance,
and using animated gestures and facial expressions are all examples of nonverbal
immediate behaviors whereas calling people by their first names, using ―we‖ language,
and telling stories are examples of verbal immediacy behaviors. Although much
research exploring the positive effects of immediacy has taken place in classroom
setting, Teven, McCroskey, and Richmond (2006) reason that immediacy also should
influence workplace relationships between supervisors and subordinates. In their study
they found that supervisors who are immediate are perceived as more trustworthy,
higher in competence and goodwill, and more socially attractive. Moreover,
employees working with immediate supervisors tend to be more motivated and willing
to work hard. They conclude that organizations should devote greater attention to
helping their managers learn to use immediacy because of its positive effect on
workplace communication outcomes. Of course, as an entry-level employee you can
also use immediacy behaviors to develop positive relationships with your co-workers
and your supervisor.
People engage in supportive communication when they listen with empathy,
acknowledge the feelings of others, and engage in dialogue to help others maintain a
sense of personal control. Of course, supportive communication is an important skill in
any context, including workplace settings. Research reviewed by Hopkins (2001)
suggests that supportive supervisor communication is one of the most significant factors
influencing employee morale.
To enhance your supportive communication skills, consider the following
strategies adapted from Albrecht and Bach‘s (1997) discussion of supportive
1. Listen without judging. Being judgmental while listening to a co-worker‘s
explanation of a problem can cause you to lose focus of what she or he is really saying.
2. Validate feelings. Even if you disagree with something your co-workers say,
validating their perceptions and feelings is an important step in building a trusting
3. Provide both informational and relational messages. Supportive
communication involves both helping and healing messages. Providing a metaphorical
―shoulder to cry on‖ is equally as important as providing suggestions and advice.
4. Be confidential. When co-workers share feelings and personal reflections with
you, maintaining their trust and confidence is essential. Telling others or gossiping about
the issue will destroy your credibility as a trustworthy co-worker.
Interaction Management
Workplace communication is somewhat different from other types of
communication situations because conversations tend to flow between the technical
jargon associated with the workplace setting and other topics brought up to relieve
stress and pass time. Thus computer technicians might talk about megabytes and
megapixels one minute and speculate on who will be voted off Survivor the next.
Competent workplace communicators engage in interaction management to establish
a smooth pattern of interaction that allows a clear flow between topics and ideas.
Using pauses, changing pitch, carefully listening to topics being discussed, and
responding appropriately are skills related to interaction management.
Cross-Cultural Skills
If you speak English as a second language, you should emphasize cross cultural
skills initially to aid your transition to the workplace. First, you should ask more questions
to clarify instructions or expectations. Because you have both a new language and
potentially a new set of technical terms to learn in your workplace, questioning is the
most effective strategy for avoiding misunderstanding. In addition, you should pay
careful attention to your co-workers. By observing them and asking questions if
necessary, you can not only learn important vocabulary but also model interaction skills
with customers or clients.
Conflict Management Skills
Although the behavioral characteristics of competent communication are
desirable in all communication situations, they will not ensure that your workplace
communication is free from conflict. Workplace conflict can occur because of
mundane issues conflict management skills are not just desirable but necessary for
effective workplace communication. People often view conflict negatively because
they associate conflict with anger. However, conflict occurs anytime two or more
people have goals that they perceive to be incompatible. When one employee wants
to work late to finish a project and another wants to go home to be with his or her
family, conflict could occur. In short, workplace conflict is a fact of life—the rule rather
than the exception. A variety of techniques can be used to manage conflict
productively. Wilmot and Hocker (2005) suggest several approaches to managing
Avoidance. With the avoidance style you deny the existence of conflict.
Although avoidance can provide you with time to think through a situation, continued
avoidance allows conflict to simmer and flare up with more intensity.
Competition. With the competition style you view conflict as a ―battle‖ and
advance your own interests over those of others. Although the competitive style can be
necessary when quick decisions must be made or when you are strongly committed to
a position, this tactic can also be highly detrimental to the relationships between you
and your co-workers.
Compromise. With a compromising style you are willing to negotiate away some
of your position as long as the other party in the conflict is willing to do the same.
Compromise can be an effective strategy because it is a win-win proposition for both
parties, but when used too often, it can become a sophisticated form of conflict
Accommodation. With the accommodating style you set aside your views and
accept those of others. Accommodation can maintain harmony in relationships, but
this strategy is problematic in many situations because tacit acceptance of others‘
views can stifle creative dialogue and decision making.
Collaboration. A collaborative style involves thoughtful negotiation and
reasoned compromise whereby both parties agree that the negotiated outcome is the
best possible alternative under the circumstance. Although collaboration takes more
time and effort to enact as a conflict management strategy, this approach typically
results in the best possible outcome for all parties involved.
Lesson 2: Meetings and Minutes of Meetings
The most common reason to have a meeting is to discuss something face to
face. It could be a new idea, a new opportunity, a problem, to brainstorm something,
reach a decision about something or any number of things. But it all comes down to
discussion and face to face interaction. A lot of work communication is done via the
phone, email, post, newsletters, company websites, intranets and extranets. These
methods of communication have made life easier and communication quicker;
however, they still cannot replace a face to face meeting. Discussing something face
to face allows you to not only hear what is being spoken; giving you access to clues
hidden in the speaker's tone of voice but it also allows you to see the speaker. The
observation of body language and facial muscles is very important as it allows you to
read the person's reaction to what you are saying as well as what they actually think
about what they themselves are saying.
Keep in mind that the primary reasons to have a meeting are:
 To gather and impart information;
 To exchange ideas, views, opinions and suggestions;
 To discuss options;
 To solve problems;
 To make decisions;
 To devise plans.
Business meetings run smoothly when they follow an agenda written and
distributed to attendees in advance. An agenda outlines the specifics of a meeting. It is
distributed to all attendees in advance.
Starkey (2003) gives a number of important purposes of agenda:
• notifies or reminds participants of the meeting date, time, and place
• focuses participants on the meeting‘s goal
• indicates the items to be discussed
• circulates any relevant documents for perusal before the meeting
• serves as a guide for the chairperson, helping maintain focus and time control
Minutes of Meetings
Minutes of meetings are written records of the proceedings in the meeting.
Informal minutes do not follow the rules of parliamentary procedure.
Formal meetings that follow the parliamentary procedure concentrate on the
1.Motions- formal proposals or suggestions determined or voted upon by the
2.Resolutions - statement of the will or opinions of the participants or organizers
subjected to voting
3. Reports-reports to give information about routine activities, assessment, and
achievements of members
For a motion or a resolution, an exact word or a word-for-word recording is
necessary. This holds true also for the identity of the person coming out with such motion
or resolution. However, as per agreement of the body, this person‘s name need not be
revealed in the minutes.
Sample Informal Minutes of Meeting
Date: February 29, 2020
Location: CAS Conference Room
Presiding Officer
: Ms. Rowena P. Fajardo
: Lina Lucas
Tony Abad
Esther Bauzon
Benjie Vargas
Fe Perez
Eric Reyes
Roa Cortez
Shella Ramos
Tina Paras
Betty Lim
: Vina Mayo
Cora Daza
Raul Goce
Eddie Legarda
After calling the February 29 meeting to order at 2 p.m., the head of the
Department introduced the newly hired members. She requested them to say
something about themselves.
The Head distributed copies of the outline of the activities of the Department for
the second semester. She said that everybody was free to give comments or
suggestions about the outline. Everybody studied the outline.
Miss Paras suggested that the seminar on Teaching Literature be moved to an
earlier schedule so that more professors could attend the seminar. Mr. Reyes added
that an earlier schedule of the seminar would give the Department more time to
prepare for the CAS Week.
The head said that the CAS Week this semester should be celebrated in just a
day, not a week, as the English Department used to do. After saying this, she
announced that the remaining 30 minutes of the meeting would be spent for fixing
teaching loads.
Mrs. Ramos inquired about the new policy of the school on distributing teaching
loads. The head advised her to consult the newly made Faculty Code to get a clearer
understanding of the new policy. She gave each member a copy of the Faculty Code,
and reminded the body of the schedule of the next Departmental meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at 3:00 p.m.
Prepared by:
Betty Lim
Attested by:
Ms. Rowena P. Fajardo
Chair, English Department
Whether the minutes result from a formal or an informal meeting, they present a
summarized form of discussion using quotation or reported speech. They are not
supposed to include the writer‘s opinions on what he/she recorded. Since they appear
as the condensed form of things that transpired in the meeting, these kinds of reports
need to use concise, direct, and specific language.
Questions for Discussion
1. How is an informal meeting different from a formal meeting?
2. How do you prepare for meetings?
3. What are the advantages of meetings over memos or letters?
The class will be grouped into two. Each group will conduct a meeting. The
groups take turns in taking the minutes of the meeting.
_____________________________________ (Organization)
___________________ (Date)
Opening: (call to order, time, venue, presiding officer)
Present: ___________________________
Absent: ___________________________
Approval of Agenda:
Approval of Previous Minutes:
Business from the Previous Meeting:
New Business:
Additions to the Agenda:
Agenda for the Next Meeting:
Prepared by: _________________________
Approved by: _____________________
Presiding Officer
Lesson 3: Memorandums
Memorandums (memos) are used primarily for internal communication; that is, they
deliver information within an organization.
Functions of Memos and E-mail Messages
1. They explain policies, procedures, and guidelines.
2. They make announcements, request information, and follow up conversations.
They save time by relaying information to many people without the need for a
3. They also ensure that all concerned individuals receive the same message,
which would be unlikely if the message were transmitted orally.
4. Printed copies of memos and E-mail messages provide a written record of
decisions, telephone conversations and meetings.
Characteristics of Memos
1. Memos use an efficient standardized format.
2. A memo normally covers only one topic.
3. Memos may be written more informally than letters addressed outside the
4. Memos are concise.
Writing Memorandums
Opening statement: The opening presents the objective of the memo in a
sentence or two. The objective could be stating a problem, announcing new
information or changing the location and time of a meeting.
Discussion: This is the body of the memo as it appears after the opening. Memos
are straightforward. They point to a relatively simple issue, but if more details about the
problem or situation need to be addressed, use headings to introduce paragraphs that
encapsulate content and organize information. For added easy reading, the important
details can be broken down into lists and bullet points.
Closing: The closing emphasizes an action that is required on the part of the
recipient. It can also highlight what is being done to solve a problem and the steps
involved. The memo should close in a courteous way. Memos can be signed or
Writing the Subject line
The subject line summarizes the contents in concise language. It should:
attract attention
create a clear picture and present an accurate summary
not be a complete sentence and should rarely occupy more than one line
In formatting memorandums keyed at computers and printed on plain paper, follow
these guidelines:
 Use 1 to 1 1/4 –inch side margins.
 Leave a top margin of 1 to 2 inches.
 Type in all caps the headings TO, FROM, DATE, and SUBJECT.
 Single-space everything within paragraphs but double- space between
The following memo has many faults in grammar, spelling, punctuation, capitalization,
word use and number form. Identify and correct the errors.
DATE: February 14, 2020
TO: John de la Cruz, Vice President
FROM: Roxanne Reyes, Manager, Payroll
SUBJECT: Departmental Error
This is to inform you that last month our central accounting department changed it‘s
computer program for payroll processing. When this computer change was
operationalized some of the stored information was not transfered to the new
information database. As a consequence of this maneuves several errors occurred in
employees paycheck (1) medical benefits were not deducted (2) annuity deductions
were not made and (3) errors occured in Federal withholding calculations.
Each and every one of the employees effected have been contacted:and this error
has been elucidated. My staff and myself has been working to replace all the missing
data; so that corrections can be made by the March 30 th payroll run.
Had I made a verification of the true facts before the paychecks were ran this slip- up
would not have materialized. To prevent such an error in the future I decided to take
the bull by the horns. At this point in time I have implemented a rigorous new
verification system. I am of the firm opinion that utilization of the new system will
definitely prevent this perplexing event from reoccurring.
Assume that you are the President of a company and you noticed that most of
your employees are not following the company dress code. Write a memo
reminding them of your company policy.
____________________________________________________ (Company)
TO: ___________________________________________________
FROM: ________________________________________________
DATE: _________________________________________________
SUBJECT: ___________________________________________________________________________
Introductory Paragraph:
Main Points:
You are an administrative assistant. You want to tell 10 people about an upcoming
computer training seminar. You are attaching a brochure about the seminar from the
presenter, but you also need to inform them of the following:
what the training is for
who the presenter is
where the training will be held, including the date and time
whether or not parking is available.
Whether or not lunch or any refreshments will be served.
Lesson 4: Business Letters
In the workplace, especially in business, letters serve a variety of purposes,
among them requests, claims, adjustments, sales, and goodwill responses. Letters are
an external, written channel of communication.
The tone of letters is usually conversational, but the degree of formality is
determined by the relationship between the sender and the receiver and the by the
purpose of the letter.
Parts of the letter
The letterhead is also called heading or return address. It is printed at the top of
a blank sheet containing all the information of the company. The letterhead displays
the organization‘s official name, address, telephone and fax number, email address,
and website (if available). The letterhead may include a logo and an advertising
message such as Great Eastern Banking: A new brand of banking. It may also include a
contact person (if available).
The dateline contains the exact date the letter was written. Since business letters
are formal letters, abbreviations or numerical dates are discouraged.
Inside Address
The inside address provides the correct recipient‘s name and his or her job title or
courtesy title such as Mr., Ms., Dr., or Professor. The recipient‘s address contains the
name of the department (if known and available), the company name, address and
postal code.
The salutation is a form of common courtesy extended in business, typed double
space below the inside address or attention line. The degree of formality used in
salutations depends on how well the writer knows the reader.
Inside address
Complimentary Close
Signature Block
Figure 4. Basic parts of a business letter
The Body of the Letter
The body of the letter is the main part where one can find what the letter is
about. It contains two to three paragraphs that are either indented or arranged in a
block style. The first paragraph provides a brief introduction and the reason(s) why the
letter is written. The succeeding paragraphs are details and the information supporting
the reason(s) for writing. The last paragraph summarizes the content of the letter and
ends with a complete and clear purpose.
The Complimentary Close
The complimentary close calls for the ending of the letter in a short and polite
manner. Only the first word is written in capital letter and it ends with a comma.
Signature Block
The signature block appears three to four lines below the complimentary close.
The combination of name, title, and organization information should be arranged to
achieve a balanced look.
Optional Parts of a Business Letter
1. The subject line can be placed in three different locations in a business letter
with the word ―Subject‖ or ―RE‖ written either in bold or all capital letters. The
most common location is between the salutation and the body of the letter,
centered, and underlined. Another location can be at the right side of inside
address, or at the right side of the salutation.
2. The attention line can be typed in several locations: 1) centered and underlined,
before or after the salutation, or 2) written after the name of the company and
department on the inside address.
3. The enclosure notation is used when an enclosure or attachment accompanies
a document; a notation appears two lines below the reference initials.
4. The copy notation is used if you make copies of correspondence for other
individuals, you may use cc to indicate carbon copy, pc to indicate photocopy.
Writing the Business Letters
A business letter is a letter written in formal language, usually used when writing
from one business organization to another, or for correspondence between such
organizations and their customers, clients and other external parties. The overall style of
the letter will depend on the relationship between the parties concerned. There are
many reasons to write a business letter. It could be to request direct information or
action from another party, to order supplies from a supplier, to identify a mistake that
was committed, to reply directly to a request, to apologize for a wrong or simply to
convey goodwill. Even today, the business letter is still very useful because it produces a
permanent record, is confidential, formal and delivers persuasive, well-considered
1. Inquiry Letters
Most business letters are written to ask information about products or services the
writer is interested in buying. They should only give the information needed by the
reader to fulfil the inquiry.
This type of letter is generally short.
The writing plan
 Opening- Open the letter with a clear request to obtain
information. State the main idea of the message. Make the
request or inquiry in the first sentence.
 Body- Give all the details that are necessary to support the main
idea. If necessary, clarify or justify the request why the information
is needed.
 Closing- Close with a positive statement that looks forward to the
future. A tactful suggestion of action combined with the
assurance should be given to show appreciation for whatever
help that can be extended.
2. Reply Letters
An experienced businessman knows that the request for information is an
opportunity for building better relationships. But before responding to any request, one
should be sure to check the facts and figures carefully.
The following suggestions apply when answering an inquiry:
 Subject Line-Identify previous correspondence.
 Opening- Make it clear that the reader‘s request is being complied
with, give the exact information requested; deliver the most
important point first; convey an upbeat, courteous, personaloriented tone.
Body- Provide all the important details about the request; arrange
information logically; explain and clarify it; use numbers or bullets
when answering a group of questions; sell the organization or the
product if appropriate.
 Closing- Establish goodwill and suggest contact.
3. Order Letters
This type of letter is also known as purchase order or PO which is to provide the
seller with detailed instructions for fulfilling order. In writing a letter to order goods or
services, the sender should remember to make it short, entirely clear, very specific, and
fully complete.
Some points to consider in writing order letters:
Opening- State clearly the items to be ordered.
Body- Present all the needed details; list items vertically; provide number
of units, order number, description, and unit price, and total price.
Closing- Request where, when, and how the product is to be shipped;
mode of payment: personal check, money order, COD, charge card etc.;
suggest method of shipment; and end on a cordial note.
4. Acknowledgment of Orders
Letters of acknowledgment are sent to people who order goods for two reasons:
(1) to confirm that the order was received, and (2) to provide an excellent opportunity
to resell the product and the organization. The acknowledgment completes a valid
contract between the buyer and the seller.
Remember the following pointers:
Opening- State that the order has been received; express
appreciation for the order; tell how the shipment will be sent.
Body- Explain the details of the shipment; include resale
information, and promote other products and services if possible;
be tactful in shipment delays; restate the order to clarify any likely
Closing- Build goodwill and use a warm, personal closing.
5. Claim Letters—attempt to put before the reader exactly what the writer thinks has
been wrong or unfair in a given transaction. One should not ask for more than one is
entitled to, nor misstate facts in an effort to deceive the other party.
A claim letter consists of four steps, arranged in the following order:
a. A complete and careful statement of what is wrong
b. A statement showing the inconvenience to which the claimant has been put, to
arouse the interest of the adjuster.
c. A request for an explanation, an adjustment, or whatever is needed to make
good the error.
d. A further appeal adapted to the reader‘s pride, self-interest, sense of fair play, or
6. An adjustment letter is a written response from a representative of a business or
agency to a customer's claim letter. It explains how a problem with a product or service
may (or may not) be resolved.
In the adjustment letter, the functional order is as follows:
a. An expression of interest and sympathy or an apology
b. A clear and complete statement of the facts so that the claimant may
understand the adjuster‘s point of view
c. An offer of an adjustment which is fair to both parties
d. An assurance that the situation will not happen again to build up damaged
7. A cover letter is a short letter introducing you and your resumé to an interviewer, and
it typically accompanies your resumé. Cover letters are persuasive documents that
function as an introduction, sales pitch, and overview of your qualifications as related
to the job description. Cover letters are important because they help ensure that your
resumé is read and help target your appeal for a particular job. As with any persuasive
document, a cover letter has four main sections: (1) attention, (2) interest, (3) desire,
and (4) action (Pearson, Nelson, Titsworth, & Harter (2011). The following are guidelines
in writing cover letters.
a. For salutation, use title and last name if available (e.g. Dear Dr. Smith or Dear
Ms. Jones). Do no use a first name unless you know the person well and are sure
this is acceptable. If you do not have a name for the salutation, use the title (e.g.
Dear Employment Manager).
b. For the first paragraph, gain attention and state purpose—indicate the
position or type of work for which you are applying. Mention how you heard
about the opening or the organization. You may also want to provide a general
overview of your qualifications for the position (functions as a preview statement
for your letter).
c. For the second paragraph, arouse interest and demonstrate desire—
summarize qualifications and describe enclosure. Here you want to describe
your major strengths as they relate to the position you are seeking. If possible,
mention one or two recent accomplishments that illustrate your proficiency and
effectiveness. The main idea is to create interest and show how your skills and
qualifications can be of value to the organization. Refer the reader to the
enclosed resumé for more detail on your qualifications and experience.
d. For the third paragraph, suggest action. Restate your strong interest in the
position of organization and your desire for a face-to-face meeting. Include a
statement about how the reader may contact you. Finally, express your
appreciation for the reader‘s time or consideration.
Questions for Discussion:
How are business letters different from memorandums?
How are letters organized?
What are the purposes of letters in your own field?
What guidelines do you consider in letter writing?
Work with a pair in class. One from the pair will write a business letter (order letter, claim
letter or a letter of inquiry). This letter will then be answered with a corresponding
business letter by the chosen partner. Make sure to include all the parts of a formal
business letter.
Lesson 5: Reports
A report is an oral presentation or written business document that provides
information, requests funding or approval, analyses company or market data, or makes
recommendations for innovation and change. Reports are either informal or formal in
style. Informal reports are usually brief and they use personal pronouns and direct style.
They are presented in letter or memo format. Formal reports tend to be longer and are
constructed in a prescribed format.
Types of Reports
1. Information reports provide objective statistical data or facts. The writer does not
interpret the information or draw conclusions about the information presented.
Examples of information reports are equipment order, sales figure, or profit
information report.
2. Analytical reports offer interpretations of information or solutions to problems.
They provide evidence that supports a decision, action, or problem solution.
3. Annual reports are a type of compliance report that corporations and many
other organizations, including educational institutions and many nonprofits,
publish yearly. Annual reports describe the achievements and developments of
an organization over the course of a given year.
4. Feasibility reports problem solve and evaluate the practicality and suitability of
an action or initiative. These internal reports analyse options and present findings
that determine whether the options are sound.
5. Proposals are persuasive written reports that offer to provide a service, sell a
product, or provide a solution to a problem or need. A solicited formal proposal
is submitted at the request of a potential funder. A funder is a business, a
government agency, or private foundation that will approve or finance your
project. An unsolicited formal proposal is drafted and submitted to a
government agency, company, or individual without having been requested or
6. Incident reports are a formal recording of the facts related to an incident. The
report usually relates to an accident or injury that has occurred on the worksite,
but it can also pertain to any unusual worksite occurrences, especially near
7. Laboratory reports communicate the important work you have done in the lab
so that someone who was not there can understand and replicate your results.
They also propose future studies and experiments or suggest alterations to preexisting methods
Incident reports, also called accident reports, describe an unusual incident or
occurrence. The incident could be an accident, a surprise inspection, the outburst of
an angry employee or customer, or a near-accident. When police write the details of a
fender bender, they are writing an incident report. When an instructor ―writes up‖ a
student for missing class, he or she is writing an incident report.
The report must be carefully written to reflect what really happened, for it can
become legal evidence used in court. It also must be written to accommodate the
needs of a variety of readers. These readers may be heads of companies, managers,
oversight organizations such as the FDA, insurance companies, and criminal justice
Incident reports are used by many professionals. Anyone who is responsible for
overseeing the safety of personnel, the public, operations, and equipment; for
preventing accidents; or for dealing with the aftermath of accidents might read an
incident report. Incident reports communicate a precise description of what happened
and provide a file for later reference. They also are written to help employees and
organizations see what is occurring so they can formulate plans to prevent the incident
from occurring again.
The most likely readers are supervisors, managers, company heads, and food
safety inspectors. Other possible readers are consumer groups, news agencies,
representatives of insurance companies, criminal proceedings personnel, and union
representatives. Because of the potential for many different readers and some distant
from the writer, the report is formal, using an appropriate manuscript format.
To write an incident report:
1. Begin with a brief summary of what happened.
2. Add Background as a heading if information about events leading up to the incident
would be helpful to your readers. Some incident reports combine the summary and
background and do not use a separate heading for this part if it is short.
3. Under Description, tell exactly what happened in chronological order. Make sure you
cover the Reporter‘s Questions: Who? What? When? Where? Why? and How?
4. Be honest and objective.
5. Use the Outcome section to provide the observable incident results.
6. Use the Conclusion section to tell what was learned from the incident and how to
prevent it from happening again. To get started, carefully note any evidence. Interview
people separately who witnessed or who know about the incident. Do not include
information you cannot verify.
The best science is born of a curiosity about the world along with the creative
thinking to figure things out. Scientific findings, however, add little to people‘s collective
knowledge unless someone records what was done and what happened in a science
report. In the classroom, lab reports become the vehicles for testing knowledge of
concepts and procedures. In professional disciplines, lab reports become the basis of
science articles submitted to major journals such as Analytical Chemistry and Journal of
Forensic Sciences.
The steps of the scientific method dictate the structure of science reports. The
scientific method uses both inductive and deductive reasoning. Reasoning from a
particular observation (I sneeze every time I am around a rose) to a general conclusion
(Therefore, I think roses make me sneeze) is called inductive reasoning. Reasoning from
a general conclusion (I think roses make me sneeze) to a particular situation (I probably
won‘t sneeze if I give my mother candy instead of roses) is called deductive reasoning.
Using inductive reasoning, scientists arrive at a tentative hypothesis, and then they use
deductive reasoning to test that hypothesis for validity. The science report is the written
record of this process.
While some differences exist in the structure of a science report among various
disciplines—names for a heading or the addition of a section—a science report always
answers these questions: What was the purpose of the lab? What materials were used?
What procedure was followed? What were the results? What were the conclusions?
As you review the notes taken during your experiment or procedure, organize your
information into these sections:
◾ Introduction: Tells the purpose or the objective of the lab (what the lab is expected to
prove) and can provide background of the situation under investigation, tells under
whose authority the lab was conducted, and provides relevant dates. The introduction
does not always have a separate heading in shorter reports.
◾ Materials and Method (also called Experimental Section, Methodology, or
Procedures): Lists materials, items, evidence, and/or instruments used. This section
describes the procedure and includes relevant calculations. Materials can be
presented in a separate heading from Methodology if the report is long.
◾ Results and Discussion (or just Results): Presents test results with relevant calculations,
including any accompanying graphics such as tables or graphs. This section presents
the results and explains why things happened. Results can be presented in a separate
heading from Discussion if the report is long.
◾ Conclusion(s): Includes a brief summary that tells how the test results, findings, and
analyses meet the objectives of the lab. This section tells what was learned or gained
from the experiment.
Sample Business Proposal (Memo Format)
Jay Crosson, Senior Vice President, Human Resources Kelly
Ratajczak, Intern, Purchasing Department
Proposal to Add a Wellness Program
April 24, 2010
Health care costs are rising. In the long run, implementing a wellness
program in our corporate culture will decrease the company's health care
Research indicates that nearly 70% of health care costs are from common
illnesses related to high blood pressure, overweight, lack of exercise, high
cholesterol, stress, poor nutrition, and other preventable health issues (Hall,
2006). Health care costs are a major expense for most businesses, and they
do not reflect costs due to the loss of productivity or absenteeism. A wellness
program would address most, if not all, of these health care issues and
related costs.
Benefits of Healthier Employees
A wellness program would substantially reduce costs associated with
employee health care, and in addition our company would prosper through
many other benefits. Businesses that have wellness programs show a lower
cost in production, fewer sick days, and healthier employees ("Workplace
Health," 2006). Our healthier employees will help to cut not only our
production and absenteeism costs but also potential costs such as higher
turnover because of low employee morale.
Wellness Program Proposal 2
Implementing the Program
Implementing a good wellness program means making small changes to
the work environment, starting with a series of information sessions. Simple
changes to our work environment should include healthier food selections
in vending machines and in the employee cafeteria. A smoke-free
environment, inside and outside the building, could be a new company
policy. An important step is to educate our employees through
information seminars and provide health care guides and pamphlets for
work and home. In addition, the human resources department could
expand the current employee assistance program by developing online
materials that help employees and their families to assess their individual
health goals.
Each health program is different in its own way, and there are a number
of programs that can be designed to meet the needs of our individual
employees. Some programs that are becoming increasingly popular in
the workplace are the following ("Workplace Health," 2006):
health promotion programs
subsidized health club membership
return-to-work programs
health-risk appraisals and screenings
Obstacles: Individual and Financial
The largest barrier in a wellness program is changing the habits and
behaviors of our employees. Various incentives such as monetary
bonuses, vacation days, merchandise rewards, recognition, and
appreciation help to instill new habits and attitudes. Providing a healthy
environment and including family in certain programs also help to
encourage healthier choices and behaviors (Hall, 2006).
Wellness Program Proposal 3
In the long run, the costs of incorporating a wellness program will be far less
than rising costs associated with health care. An employee's sense of
recognition, appreciation, or accomplishment is an incentive that has
relatively low or no costs. The owner of Natural Ovens Bakery, Paul Sitt, has
stated that his company gained financially after providing programs
including free healthy lunches for employees (Springer, 2005). Sitt said he
believes that higher morale and keeping valuable employees have helped
his business tremendously.
It is important that our company be healthy in every way possible. Research
shows that 41% of businesses already have some type of wellness program in
progress and that 32% will incorporate programs within the next year
("Workplace Health," 2006). Our company should always be ahead of our
competitors. I want to thank you for your time, and I look forward to
discussing this proposal with you further next week.
Source: Hacker Handbooks (Boston: Bedford/ St. Martin’s, 2011).
This paper follows the style guidelines in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, (6th ed. (2010).
Questions for Discussion
1. Why are reports important in the workplace?
2. How do you formulate conclusions for a report?
3. Why would you turn down a proposal if you were a funder, and explain why
those reasons are important?
Break into groups of three with your class colleagues. Your team must come up
with a proposal for submission to management to supply five small (15 participants)
management- training seminars to employees interested in moving up the corporate
ladder. Write a task plan and budget for the proposal. Write at least two pages
detailing the personnel, costs, materials, locations, and any other items that may be
needed to make the seminars possible. Follow the sample template below.
Group No: _______________
Title of activity/Theme:
DETAILS: (Date, Venue, participants, budget, others)
Lesson 6: Networking
An organization can be a network. Because of advanced technology and
globalization, organizations are employing combinations of communication channels
increasing numbers of people working in ‗virtual teams‘ within a networked virtual
organization. Virtual teams or telecommuters may rely on email, voicemail, instant
messaging, and videoconferencing.
Networking can take many forms, including:
Establishing communication links with other people at formally structured social
gatherings at which ‗shoptalk‘ is the primary focus
Relationship-building behaviour at formal gatherings such as conferences,
professional association meetings, and social activities associated with lectures
and presentations and similar gatherings
Relationship-building behaviour within organizations, such as service clubs,
religious groups, and lodges that often bind members together with rituals for the
purpose of fellowship and, sometimes creating systems of reciprocal preference
for professional opportunities or the sharing of confidential information
Relationship building at social occasions such as luncheons, dinner parties and
golf matches that provide circumstances for professional payoffs
Forming loose coalitions of organization representatives that meet on an
ongoing basis to exchange information and work towards unofficial, and
sometimes official, cooperation.
Networking Strategies
Effective networking involves a mix of communication skills such as assertiveness,
listening, feedback and questioning. To become a better networker, consider these
1. Join as many professional associations as you can; attend meetings.
2. Be aware of what conferences and seminars in your industry are coming up; do
what you can to get to them.
3. Become an expert at what you do, your organization and your industry.
Research print and online sources.
4. Raise your profile, making you a target for other networkers—consider giving
presentations, writing articles, setting up a website or blog.
5. Ensure that you have an up-to-date business card with all of your details on it;
carry at least twenty copies when attending meetings both outside and inside
the organization.
6. Keep records of contacts on your computer and in hard copy form.
7. One of the basic principles of networking is ―you have to give to get.‖
8. Brush up your interpersonal skills.
9. Be wary of giving away confidential material.
10. Be wary of emotional entanglements.
Questions for Discussion
1. What are the benefits of social networking sites? What are its limitations?
2. How can we maintain professional networks?
At the end of the lesson, you are expected to:
determine the genres in academic writing;
discuss the structure and style of academic writing;
manifest awareness of audience and context in writing ideas; and
write academic papers with appropriate tone and style.
Lesson 1: Academic Writing
Academic writing is what scholars do to communicate with other scholars in their
fields of study, their disciplines. It‘s the research report a biologist writes, the interpretive
essay a literary scholar composes, the media analysis a film scholar produces. At the
same time, academic writing is what you have to learn so that you can participate in
the different disciplinary conversations that take place in your courses. You have to
learn to think like an academic, read like an academic, do research like an academic,
and write like an academic—even if you have no plans to continue your education
and become a scholar yourself.
Gillet, Hammond, and Martalla (2009) emphasized that in academic writing you
are expected to produce logically-structured ideas with well-argued, substantiated
points, taking different opinions into consideration. There are various genres of
academic writing, such as essays, reports, lab reports, case studies and dissertations.
Regardless of the genre you are writing in, your style of writing should be the same –
clear, concise, with appropriately referenced ideas. In higher education one of the
main things you will be judged on is the quality of your writing. This chapter considers
the various elements required in an academic text from word to paragraph level. It
offers advice on text cohesion and emphasises the need for planning and drafting
One of the main ways that academic writing is different from other forms of
writing is in its relationship with its audience – that is to say the reader. For most students
that reader is one of their lecturers or tutors, although it could also be fellow students.
Whoever it is, the reader will be concerned with whether the piece of writing has
reached a certain standard and will use those standards to judge the quality of the
writing. Furthermore, the judgement will be made formally, with a mark or grade and
perhaps some written comments. People might make judgements privately about the
quality of a letter they receive from a friend or business associate but there is no need
or expectation that they will record their verdict.
The judgements that are made about a piece of academic writing are part of
the whole process of deciding upon the quality of a person‘s learning and, in turn, the
class of degree they should be awarded at the end of their studies. The standards that
are used to form those judgements may be expressed in different ways according to
the subject of study or institution but they will always be concerned with structure,
clarity and accuracy. There will also be an expectation that the writing will demonstrate
an objective approach and explore the subject matter thoroughly, resulting in a careful
Whatever your level of study, it is important to be critical when you write an
academic piece of work. This does not mean finding fault with something, as it can
mean in everyday life. In the context of academic writing, being critical includes:
■ showing an understanding and knowledge of theory
■ demonstrating an awareness of what has been written or said about the subject
■ taking into consideration different points of view
■ using reason to make a judgement
■ not accepting ideas until they have been examined closely (and then maybe
rejecting them)
■ coming to your own conclusions
■ using your own voice
You might think this looks like a tall order, but hopefully there is nothing in the list that
you would disagree with. The same approach is used in reading an academic text,
where you need to:
■ identify the line of reasoning or argument
■ look for hidden assumptions
■ decide if the evidence used to support the argument is good enough.
Genres of Writing
Different types of academic writing are known as genres. They have distinct
purposes, forms and recognised structures. Common examples are essays, reports, case
studies and projects. Although certain genres seem more suited to certain disciplines
than others, you could well be asked to write in any of the above genres during your
study. The clue to this will be in your assignment brief, and it is worth spending time to
make sure you know exactly what type of writing you have got to produce. Whatever
the genre, there are certain things that are common to all. Academic writing:
■ uses evidence to support the points it makes
■ uses structure and order to guide the reader through the writing
■ contains references for anyone else‘s ideas or work used.
Basic Structure
Structure is of major importance in a piece of academic writing and is one of the
key ways that it differs from other forms of writing. There is an expectation that the
writing will take the reader through the different stages or sections of the work, including
clear signposts along the way. Assessment criteria will almost always include how well a
piece of work has been structured. An assignment brief may give you advice on this
and you should follow it carefully.
Although different disciplines will rely on and prefer different types of writing, there are
two that are common to almost all: the essay and the report. It is worth understanding
and knowing the accepted structure of each.
1. Essay
The essay has been described as ‗the default genre‘ (Andrews, 2003) and as
such cuts across all disciplines. It is used to ask you to discuss and explore something in
depth – for example the reasons for a particular event in history, the advantages and
disadvantages of a theory, the impact of a new law on society. It will usually expect
you to indicate your point of view or judgment on the topic.
Typical essay structure
An essay normally follows this structure:
1. Introduction
2. Development
3. Conclusion
4. References
The four areas play very different parts. The Introduction acts as a way in to the
main section, providing some background information on the topic and explaining
which particular aspects of it will be covered in the essay. It is normally one or two
paragraphs long. The Development section builds up the writer‘s main ideas in a series
of paragraphs. These paragraphs must be linked to one another so that anyone
reading the essay can follow the line of argument and thread of the discussion. The
Conclusion draws together the main point of each of the paragraphs and can include
a statement on the opinion of the writer. Finally the References section gives full details
of any sources (books, journals, websites, etc.) that have been mentioned, cited or
quoted in the essay.
2. Report
A report is usually the result of some kind of investigation of a situation, event or
series of events. It is very common to working life so if you become familiar with its
structure and use it well you will find you are developing an important skill for future
employment. Some common examples of reports are:
■ a market research report, explaining trends and consumer behaviour
■ an annual report from a company, documenting performance
■ a survey report, presenting findings on opinions, preferences or behaviour
Typical Report Structure
Unlike an essay, a report will have sections and headings to guide the reader
through the document. Like an essay, it has a beginning, middle and end.
■ first part: title page; summary; list of contents
■ middle part: introduction; methodology; findings/results; discussion; conclusion
■ last part: references; bibliography; appendices.
The first part presents your work to the audience, rather like the opening credits
of a film or play. The summary (or abstract) is particularly useful here as it gives a
condensed version of the entire report. The middle part is where the material is
developed. Each section has a heading and takes the reader through the
investigation, analysis and discussion. The last part contains all the supporting material
that has been used in the report, for example any outside sources, the raw data or
questionnaires, if used.
3. Other Types of Academic Writing
Although essays and reports are generic terms, there are many other types of
academic writing or genres (Gillett and Hammond, in press):
■ Arts and Humanities: essay; critique or review
■ Science, Engineering and Technology: report; research proposal
■ Health and Life Sciences: lab report; reflective account
■ Social Sciences: project; case study
Academic Style
If you are not sure about the difference between formal and informal language,
try reading widely and critically. Read a popular newspaper article and a friend‘s letter
or email, and then read a page of a book or a journal from your recommended
reading list. You will soon begin to see there is a difference in the style of these texts.
Formal vocabulary
Academic writing uses more formal vocabulary than spoken language. Students
often feel that it is difficult to distinguish between formal and less formal language.
The following written sentence would be perfectly acceptable for instance:
He tried to show that it was possible to lose weight and eat his favourite food.
Consider the same sentence written more formally:
He attempted to prove that losing weight whilst eating his favourite meals was
The second example somehow seems more authoritative and is better placed in
the academic world rather than in a magazine. The reason for using formal expressions
is not because academic language is pompous, but because it is clearer. Consider the
following example:
Roberts (2007) says that lower house prices do not affect you if you are not
planning to sell your property.
Questions for Discussion
1. How is academic writing different from workplace writing?
2. What are the tone and style of academic writing?
Find more formal words or phrases to replace the informal words below:
1. Research shows . . .
2. Three problems have been found.
3. The changes he made were bad.
4. Lots of people think . . .
5. There were many reasons for this.
6. Scientists have tried to prove . . .
7. P100,000,000.00 was given to charity.
8. He discussed issues like famine and poverty.
9. She has got to find alternatives.
10. We do not have enough resources.
Reaction Paper
One of the requirements that teachers often ask their students to submit in
college is a reaction paper. A reaction essay or report asks for your opinion, reaction,
and analysis about a text, film, experience, or issue.
Murray and Rockowitz (2020), suggest two parts of a reaction paper:
Part 1: A Summary of the Work
To develop the first part of a report, do the following:
Identify the author and title of the work and include in parentheses the publisher and
publication date. For magazines, give the date of publication.
Write an informative summary of the material.
Condense the content of the work by highlighting its main points and key supporting
Use direct quotations from the work to illustrate important ideas.
Summarize the material so that the reader gets a general sense of all key aspects of the
original work.
Do not discuss in great detail any single aspect of the work, and do not neglect to
mention other equally important points.
Also, keep the summary objective and factual. Do not include in the first part of the
paper your personal reaction to the work; your subjective impression will form the basis
of the second part of your paper.
PART 2: Your Reaction to the Work
To develop the second part of a report, do the following:
Focus on any or all of the following questions. Check with your instructor to see if s/he
wants you to emphasize specific points.
How is the assigned work related to ideas and concerns discussed in the course for
which you are preparing the paper? For example, what points made in the course
textbook, class discussions, or lectures are treated more fully in the work?
How is the work related to problems in our present-day world?
How is the material related to your life, experiences, feelings and ideas? For instance,
what emotions did the work arouse in you?
Did the work increase your understanding of a particular issue? Did it change your
perspective in any way?
Evaluate the merit of the work: the importance of its points, its accuracy, completeness,
organization, and so on.
You should also indicate here whether or not you would recommend the work to
others, and why.
A Report on Man’s Search for Meaning
Dr. Viktor Frankl's book Man's Search for Meaning (New York: Washington Square
Press, 1966) is both an autobiographical account of his years as a prisoner in Nazi
concentration camps and a presentation of his ideas about the meaning of life. The
three years of deprivation and suffering he spent at Auschwitz and other Nazi
camps led to the development of his theory of Logotherapy, which, very briefly,
states that the primary force in human beings is "a striving to find a meaning in one's
life" (154). Without a meaning in life, Frankl feels, we experience emptiness and
loneliness that lead to apathy and despair. This need for meaning was
demonstrated to Frankl time and again with both himself and other prisoners who
were faced with the horrors of camp existence. Frankl was able to sustain himself
partly through the love he felt for his wife. In a moment of spiritual insight, he realized
that his love was stronger and more meaningful than death, and would be a real
and sustaining force within him even if he knew his wife was dead. Frankl's
comrades also had reasons to live that gave them strength. One had a child
waiting for him; another was a scientist who was working on a series of books that
needed to be finished. Finally, Frankl and his friends found meaning through their
decision to accept and bear their fate with courage. He says that the words of
Dostoevsky came frequently to mind: "There is one thing that I dread: not to be
worthy of my suffering." When Frankl's prison experience was over and he returned
to his profession of psychiatry, he found that his theory of meaning held true not only
for the prisoners but for all people. He has since had great success in working with
patients by helping them locate in their own lives meanings of love, work, and
One of my reactions to the book was the relationship I saw between the ―Capos‖
and ideas about anxiety, standards, and aggression discussed in our psychology
class. The Capos were prisoners who acted as trustees, and Frankl says they acted
more cruelly toward the prisoners than the guards or the SS men. Several
psychological factors help explain this cruelty. The Capos must have been
suppressing intense anxiety about ―selling themselves out‖ to the Nazis in return for
small favors. Frankl and other prisoners must have been a constant reminder to the
Capos of the courage and integrity they themselves lacked. When our behaviors
and values are threatened by someone else acting in a different way, one way we
may react is with anger and aggression. The Capos are an extreme example of
how, if the situation is right, we may be capable of great cruelty to those whose
actions threaten our standards.
I think that Frankl‘s idea that meaning is the most important force in human
beings helps explain some of the disorder and discontent in the world today. Many
people are unhappy because they are caught in jobs where they have no
responsibility and creativity; their work lacks meaning. Many are also unhappy
because our culture seems to stress sexual technique in social relationships rather
than human caring. People buy popular books that may help them become better
partners in bed, but that may not make them more sensitive to each other‘s human
needs. Where there is no real care, there is no meaning. To hide the inner emptiness
that results from impersonal work and sex, people busy themselves with the
accumulation of material things. With television sets, stereos, cars, expensive
clothes, and the like, they try to forget that their lives lack true meaning instead of
working or going to school to get a meaningful job, or trying to be decent human
I have also found that Frankl‘s idea that suffering can have meaning helps
me understand the behavior of people I know. I have a friend named Jim who was
always poor and did not have much of a family—only a stepmother who never
cared for him as much as for her own children. What Jim did have, though, was
determination. He worked two jobs to save money to go to school, and then
worked and went to school at the same time. The fact that his life was hard seemed
to make him bear down all the more. On the other hand, I can think of a man in my
neighborhood who for all the years I've known him has done nothing with his life. He
spends whole days smoking and looking at cars going by. He is a burnedout case.
Somewhere in the past his problems must have become too much for him, and he
gave up. He could have found meaning in his life by deciding to fight his troubles
like Jim, but he didn't, and now he is a sad shadow of a man. Without determination
and the desire to face his hardships, he lost his chance to make his life meaningful.
In conclusion, I would strongly recommend Frankl‘s book to persons who care
about why they are alive, and who want to truly think about the purpose and
meaning of their lives
Reflection Paper
The Reflection Paper is an assignment that invites you to draw on your own
experience. It is discipline and course specific and might take the form of a short paper
on course readings. Ghaffar (2014) opines that a strong reflection paper makes
insightful and unexpected connections using examples, re-evaluates prior assumptions,
develops narrative voice and a unique writing style, and incorporates brief quotes from
the course material.
Ghaffar (2014), further states that in the reflection paper, you:
• bridge comprehension of course readings with your knowledge and
experience in order to grasp the readings with greater depth
• integrate your knowledge and experience with course readings and concepts
by drawing on concrete examples
• question your assumptions about a course reading or service placement
opportunity; it also invites you to step back from your own prior beliefs and arrive
at a more complex, or new understanding of a reading, issue, or life experience
In addition, you may do the following when you write a reflection paper:
(a) Identify a fascinating issue, or concept that arose out of the course material,
class discussion or service learning placement.
(b) Relate this to your experience and/or knowledge; you can also start with your
experience and connect it to the course material.
(c) Consider how (a) helps to understand or even challenge (b) and vice versa.
(d) What are the implications of this in terms of your intellectual development,
individual growth and/or understanding, or career goals?
Examples from Reflection Papers
reflect on a
branding campaign
Brings in
experience to
probe course
English Literature:
reflect on an essay
Psychology: reflect
on social media
Draws on your
knowledge to
explain a
Service Learning:
reflect on service
Illustrates what
you have
When I saw the poster advertising Ai
Wewei‘s exhibition at the AGO, I felt a sense
of belonging, since I come from China. I
was already aware that Ai Weiwei was a
provocateur and that his show was banned
in China; and this made it seem that much
more enticing, as I might never have a
chance to see it in China. When I later
reflected on this experience, I realized that
effective advertising elicits a profoundly
personal connection from the viewer.
Personally, I don‘t think Chesterton‘s
description of the colour brown as ―the
primal twilight of creation‖ is hyperbolical at
all; in fact, brown is the colour of the earth,
from which mostly everything grows, and
which thus supports existence. More
importantly, the earth in itself is literally
primal, as it was a prerequisite for creation
of any kind. Thinking about the colour
brown in these terms made me question my
initial assumption that brown is a boring
One type of social influence I have
experienced online is interpersonal. My
personal experience using online gaming
demonstrates the interpersonal dimension
of social influence discussed in tutorial.
Players are motivated to form into
organized groups in massive multiplayer
online games. When forming these groups,
various roles are played in order to
accomplish collective goals within the
group. Some of the roles include trading
information to reach a destination or goal,
while still trying to be the best player in the
During my placement at CAMH working
with a neuropsychiatric, I developed
learned from
your service
personal initiative. For example, I read the
articles written by the principle investigator.
When he learned I was engaged at a
practical and academic level with his work,
he allocated more tasks to me. This helped
me to develop my confidence and to
bridge my academic knowledge of
neuroscience with the complexities of
working in lab where the results are not
always as cut-and-dry as they appear in a
Technical Papers
A technical paper is a paper that reports the findings of research. It may be
written for presentation at a conference or symposium. It may also be for publication.
The Main Components of Technical Papers
1. Abstract
2. Introduction
3. Methods
4. Results and Discussions
5. Conclusions
6. References
7. Biography
Abstract. The abstract is a brief summary of the contents of your paper.
Introduction. The purpose of this section is threefold. First, you want to trace previous
work on the subject and set up the problem. Second, you need to identify how your
paper addresses that problem. That is key: explaining what you do to address the gaps
of literature or problem of the paper. Finally, you should note the broader contributions
and implications of the piece. I like to think that the contributions of a paper can be
theoretical, empirical and/or policy relevant, although often the papers published in
top journals have all three.
Data and methods. This section answers the question ―How do you know what you
know?‖ That can be further broken down into three parts:
 On what kind of information or material are you basing your findings (e.g., interviews,
statistics, documents)?
 How did you find that information, or where did it come from (e.g., U.S. Census,
National Archives, fieldwork)?
 How did you analyze that information? That is, what software or analytic strategies
did you use to come up with your findings?
Results. This section contains the meat of the paper, where you present the findings
from your work, and you should keep two points in mind. First, make sure that your
results speak to the theoretical and empirical questions that your paper raises in the
front half -- in other words, that your paper is cohesive throughout. Second, and
particularly for qualitative papers, organize your results analytically or thematically -not, for example, in chronological order or according to some other simple accounting.
You should be thoughtful about how to present your results to get the most out of your
Discussion or conclusion. You may also find a combined discussion and conclusion
at the end of the paper. What are the differences between a discussion and a
conclusion? That can vary by author or paper, and it depends on how you have written
up your results section. One way you can think about it is that the discussion section
allows you to step back from the results section and reflect on the broader story or
themes of your results and how they tie together. If you see a discussion section this
way, then you can think about a conclusion as addressing three things: 1) summarizing
what you did in the paper, including its main findings, 2) acknowledging the limitations
of your work and 3) proposing steps for future research that builds on what you‘ve done
in the paper.
Questions for Discussion
1. Why should we publish technical papers in journals or present in conferences?
2. How is a technical paper organized?
Write a reflection paper based on the question:
―Do you sometimes take time to clarify your values in a moment of doubt or
Look for a published journal online and outline the essential parts of the technical paper
by filling out the repertory grid below.
Title of the Technical paper:
Author (s): __________________________________________________________________________
Year of Publication: ___________________________________
(What is the
technical paper‘s
What are the
problems being
addressed by the
(On what kind of
information or
material were the
findings based?
How were the
information found?
How was the
analyzed? )
(What are the salient
findings of the work?)
(Summarize the
information of the
technical paper.)
Evaluation of the Course
1. What lesson or activity did I enjoy most? Why?
2. What is the most important lesson which I can apply in my daily life?
3. What are the new insights/discoveries that I learned?
4. What topic/s do I find least important?
5. What possible topics should have been included?
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Appendix A
Rubric for business letter writing
Task Description: (Teacher may explain specific assignment in this space.)
4 – Exemplary
3 – Accomplished
2 – Developing
1 – Beginning
 Accurately uses
correct business
letter format
body, closure,
enclosure, and
 Mostly uses
correct business
letter format
body, closure,
enclosure, and
 Some
errors in use of
correct business
letter format
body, closure,
enclosure, and
 Several
errors in use of
correct business
letter format
body, closure,
enclosure, and
 Letter clearly
states the
 Appropriate
explanations or
facts used to
support the main
 Easy to follow
 Tone is
appropriate for
 Letter clearly
states the
 Some
explanations or
facts used to
support the
main idea
 Somewhat hard
to follow
 Tone is generally
appropriate for
 Purpose of
letter is unclear
 More
explanations or
facts need to be
used to support
the main idea
 Hard to follow
 Tone is too
formal or too
informal for
 Purpose of
letter is unclear
 Main idea is not
supported by
explanations or
 Letter rambles;
hard to follow
or understand
 Tone is
for intended
 Typed, using
correct spacing,
font, and format
 Letter typed
with few
problems in
spacing, font, or
 Letter typed
with frequent
problems in
spacing, font, or
 Letter not
typed; wrong
format used and
hard to read
 Accurate use of
punctuation and
 No spelling errors
 One or two
mistakes with
punctuation or
 One or two
spelling errors
 More than two
mistakes in
punctuation or
 More than two
spelling errors
 Incorrect use
throughout the
letter of
punctuation or
 Frequent
spelling errors
distract from
Appendix B
Reflection Paper Rubric
Depth of
Quality of
lack of
reflection on
the selected
topic, with no
a minimal
reflection on
the selected
including a
details and
Writing does
not include
the required
of the
includes the
a few
of the
has little to
do with the
main topic.
relates to the
main topic.
No details
examples are
demonstrates a
general reflection
on the selected
topic, including
some suporting
details and
demonstrates an
in-depth reflection
on the selected
topic, including
supporting details
and examples.
Writing includes the
components of the
selected topic.
Writing surpasses
the required
components of the
selected topic.
Information clearly
relates to the main
topic. It provides 12 supporting details
and/or examples.
Information clearly
relates to the main
topic. It includes
several supporting
details and/or
Structure &
make little to
no sense.
Writing is
unclear, and
thoughts are
not well
Thoughts are
expressed in
a logical
Writing is mostly
clear, concise, and
organized with the
use of excellent
structure. Thoughts
are expressed in a
logical manner.
There are
spelling or
errors per
page of
There are
more than
five spelling
or grammar
errors per
page of
There are no more
than five spelling or
grammar errors per
page of writing
Writing is clear,
concise, and well
organized with the
use of excellent
structure. Thoughts
are expressed in a
logical manner.
There are no more
than three spelling
or grammar errors
per page of writing
Appendix C
Short Essay Rubric
Score Completion
The answer is
Accuracy Comprehension Organization Conventions
The answer is
missing slight
provided is
Content demonstrates
understanding of, and
engagement with, the
The answer is
missing multiple
provided is
Content demonstrates
basic understanding
of the text(s).
Content suggests
lack of
preparation or
provided is
Content demonstrates
less than basic
understanding of the
Content only
related to the
Content demonstrates
a lack of
understanding of the
Content fails to
meet the basic
requirements of
the task.
A small
amount of
is accurate.
None of the
provided is
Content is wellorganized and
easy to read.
Points follow a
Content is wellorganized and
easy to read.
Points follow a
Content is
organized and
easy to read.
Points follow a
mostly logical
Content may be
unorganized and
difficult to read.
Points do not
follow a solidly
Content is
illogical, and
difficult to read.
Content demonstrates
a complete lack of
understanding of the
Content is very
poorly organized,
illogical, and
difficult to read.
provided is
Content demonstrates
a deep understanding
of, and engagement
with, the text(s).
No major
grammatical or
spelling errors. No
more than two
minor errors.
No major
grammatical or
spelling errors. No
more than five
minor errors.
Some major and
minor errors that
don’t necessarily
Major and minor
errors significantly
weaken quality of
although still
seriously impaired
by multitude of
Multitude of major
and minor errors
make answer
Appendix D
Advocacy Group:________________________________
PART I. BACKGROUND (10 points)
 The problem/ issue to be addressed by the advocacy is clearly defined
 There is enough literature to support the existence of an issue/ problem
 There is clear presentation of challenges of people affected by the problem
 The vision is specific to the group’s advocacy
 The vision reflects the expected outcome of the advocacy
 The goals contain specific actions to achieve the vision
 The vision and goals are realistic and achievable
 Specific target beneficiaries are identified
 Current situation of target beneficiaries are clearly described
PART IV. RESPONSE (20 points)
 The identified solution is appropriate for the given problem
 Programs/ projects are credible and realistic that people are encouraged to take
part in the advocacy
 There is sufficient information on the implementation of the programs or projects
 Strategies for the campaign are well-planned
 The identified supporters share the same values and vision with the advocates
 The supporters are sufficient for the campaign
 There are clear strategies on how to gain supporters
 The identified supporters can really help further the cause of the advocates
 The identified resources vary according to the needs of the group
 There are enough resources assets for the implementation of the programs
 The resources are accessible and available
 There is evidence of exhaustive review of literature
 The list of references and citations follow the APA format
Appendix E
Advocacy Title:______________________________
Directions: Check the box that corresponds to your evaluation of the video, with 5 as the
highest and 1 as the lowest.
Topic is thoroughly covered in an interesting and
creative manner
Advocacy video effectively shows desired action
Storyboard is thorough and descriptive
Creative shots are used for a purpose
Effective use of music, sound effects; voice levels
are consistent and understandable
Other technical elements
Video contains transitions, special effects or
Grammar, spelling, punctuation, capitalization are
Credits are included; references are documented
correctly; and copyright law has been followed.
Within 5-7 minutes
Time management
Time is used effectively to create the advocacy
Appendix F
Advocacy Title____________________________________________________________________
Directions: Check the box that corresponds to your evaluation of the presenter, with 5 as the
highest and 1 as the lowest.
Identifies the nature and scope of the problem (provides
Locates us in time and place, convinces us of the necessity
for action
Articulates a clear solution, convinces us it is the best
Provides evidence that shows this solution is appropriate for
the given problem/context
Well-integrated use of visuals throughout the presentation;
relevance is clear
Visuals successfully enhance the argument, the advocacy is
more convincing as result
Presentation shows evidence of research and thoughtful
analysis of the problem
Appropriately timed
Good posture and eye contact, and effective interaction with
visual elements
Good voice projection and enunciation
Confident, convincing, and passionate
Strives to answer audience questions with accuracy, based
on knowledge of problem
Shows enthusiasm for spreading further understanding of
problem/solution in Q & A
Makes an attempt to engage with all questions, even if the
answer is not known
Preserves presenter ethos (eye contact, confidence, voice
projection) during Q & A