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Communication Affects on Life
Home Up Speaking to Inform Communication Affects on Life The Process of Communication Listening One-to-One Communication Group Discussions Building Confidence Preparing Your Speech Delivering Your Speech


Lesson Objectives:

  •  Define basic speech communication terms
  • Identify benefits of improving speech communication
  • State and know the skills that make an effective speech communicator
  • Understand the importance of speech communication in your life.

What is Communicaton?
is the process of sending and receiving messages to achieve understanding.  It is "saying what you mean".  Anytime you speak a sentence, make a gesture, or merely grunt, you are "saying" you have some idea in your mind that you wish to transfer to another person.


Text Box: Message



Text Box: Receiver



Symbols of communication are:

  • Words
  • Body movements
  • Facial expressions
  • Voice tones

How Do People Communicate?
Human beings use various means of communication.  You can show you agree with someone by just nodding your head, walking in a way to indicate how you feel, you can also communicate something about yourself to almost everyone you meet by what you wear.  These are examples of nonverbal communication.

Humans communicate best through speaking and writing.  These are verbal forms of communication.  Words are used to stand for, or to symbolize ideas humans have in their minds.  People then transfer the meaning of these ideas of other people.

The process of getting the meaning of thoughts on person has in his or her mind into the mind of another as clearly and accurately as possible, by using their own voices is called speech communication.

What Types of Speech Communication Are There?
Interpersonal communication is the process of communicating verbally or non verbally with other people.  It is essentially talk that takes place between two or more human beings.  Intrapersonal communication is communication when you are alone.  It takes place through an inward talking to yourself.

One-to-One Communication involves talking with one other person.  Included here are face-to-face conversations, telephone conversations, and interviews.  Usually the sender and receiver switch roles often during the one-to-one communication.

Group discussion is a second type of interpersonal communication.  It involves three or more people with a common purpose.  The purpose may be to solve a common problem, to make a decision, or to answer a question that interests all the members of the group.  Each member of the group generally has an opportunity to communicate.  Group communication includes such things as committee meetings, conferences, and workshops, and even family small groups.

Public communication is a type of interpersonal communication in which one or more people communicate with an audience.  A typical example of public communication is public speaking.  Public speakers have a powerful influence on society.  They include teachers, attorneys, preachers, politicians, and many others use interpersonal communication to reach large numbers of people through the spoken word.  Two other forms of public communication are oral interpretation of literature and drama.  Oral Interpretation of literature is a performing-art form in which literature is read aloud to an audience (examples include reading a story to a young child).   Drama is a performing-art that uses both language and action to present a picture of human life to an audience.

Mass Communication is where one person or perhaps several senders communicate with a large number of listeners.  Usually these listeners are not physically present when the sending takes place.  Newspapers and magazines are examples of mass communication.

What Are the Benefits of Speech Communication?

1) You Learn by Communicating.  One reason people use speech is to learn.  Once children learn to speak, they begin asking questions.  Teaching and learning takes place because of Speech Communication.

2) You Make Decisions by Communicating.  Speech is important in helping people to make decisions. Many daily decisions, especially personal decisions arrive by "speaking" to others.  In additional to personal decisions, you must use speech for making group decisions.  Government decisions also involve communication.

3) You Find Pleasure in Communicating.  Humans enjoy good conversation and the company of others.  People need to interact with each other to remain healthy and happy.

4) Your Future Depends on Communicating.  Speech communication is vital to your future.  You must learn how to communicate your ideas for success in your workplace, schooling, etc.  How well you communicate depends on how successful your career is.  Lee Iacocca, the former chairman of the Chrysler Corporation says that "You can have brilliant ideas, but if you can't them across, your brains won't get you anywhere".

Careers that Involve Speech Communication

  • Auctioneer
  • Audiologist
  • Children's librarian
  • City Manager
  • Clergy
  • Clinical psychologist
  • Commentator
  • County agricultural agent
  • Director
  • Directory assistance operator
  • Computer Help Desk Representative
  • Disc jockey (DJ)
  • Drama teacher
  • Employment interviewer
  • Fund raiser
  • Hotel front-desk office clerk
  • Interpreter
  • Labor relations manager
  • Narrator
  • News reporter
  • Public Officer
  • Public Relations representative
  • Receptionist/Secretary
  • Salesperson
  • Sales Manager
  • Social Worker
  • Speech Pathologist
  • Speech Writer
  • Sports Announcer
  • Stage Manager
  • Survey Worker (Interviewer)
  • Teacher
  • Training representative
  • Travel Guide

What Makes An Effective Speech Communicator?

Throughout history, the people who have had the greatest impact on other people's lives have been those skilled in speaking.  Some of America's most effective communicators have been Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Susan B. Anthony, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Martin Luther King, Jr.

The list below shows what makes an effective communicator

1) Sincerity:  Effective speech communicators must be sincere, in that they must themselves believe in what they say and those who are listening must believe in what they mean.

2) Knowledge:  Effective speech communicators must speak knowledgeably.

3) Organization:  Effective speech communicators must be well organized.

4) Listening:  Effective speech communicators must be well organized.

5) Confidence:  Effective speech communicators must be confident and be able to overcome stage fright.

6) Language:  Effective speech communicators must use language carefully.  A speaker's choice of words can make the difference in whether or not the message is received and understood as the speaker intends it to be.

7) Nonverbal Communication:  Effective speech communicators must make good use of nonverbal communication.  Speakers "say" a great with their voice, but also with their body movements.

8) Goal Setting:  Effective speech communicators will generally be able to reach certain goals.  When an effective speaker presents information about a topic, the receivers will also always know more about the topic after listening than they did before.

References: Speech: Exploring Communication by J. Regis O'Connor (1996)