6-1
Communication in a Changing
World, 2006 Edition
C
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6
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Appreciating and Using
Nonverbal Communication
Bethami A. Dobkin
Roger C. Pace
McGraw-Hill
© 2006 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
6-2
Nonverbal Communication
• Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
• Functions of Nonverbal Communication
• Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Communicating Responsibly: Managing
Nonverbal Cues Effectively
McGraw-Hill
© 2006 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
6-3
Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
“We will try to persuade with our words, but if
our words fail, we will try to persuade with
out acts.”
—Martin Luther King, Jr.
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6-4
Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
• Nonverbal Communication Is Not Language
– Nonverbal communication is defined as
messages expressed through symbols other than
words
– Also call nonlinguistic, a characteristic of
nonverbal communication indicating that
nonverbal messages are outside languages
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6-5
Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
“Emotion constantly finds expression in
bodily position.”
—Mabel Elsworth Todd, dancer, educator,
author
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6-6
Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
• Nonverbal Communication Is Often Linked
to Our Emotions
– Most nonverbal communication is intrinsic, or
inherently connected to our inner feelings or
emotions
– The intrinsic nature of nonverbal cues leads us
to perceive them as more truthful or genuine
than verbal communication
– The intrinsic nature of nonverbal messages also
makes some of them more universal than verbal
messages
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6-7
Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
• Nonverbal Communication Is Highly
Contextual
– Nonverbal messages often get their precise
meaning from the communication context
• Nonverbal Communication Is Influenced by
Culture and Gender
– The way we use and understand nonverbal
messages is also dependent on our cultural
knowledge and values
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6-8
Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
• Exploring Communication Concepts
– Gender Differences in Nonverbal
Communication
• How do you differ from the general tendencies listed
above?
• How are you similar?
• Why do you think men generally make less eye
contact than women?
• What are some possible reasons that men use more
space than women?
McGraw-Hill
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6-9
Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
• Nonverbal Communication Is Continuous
– Nonverbal message flow in continuous, or
steady streams of cues rather than individual,
distinct bits of information
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6-10
Basic Characteristics of Nonverbal
Communication
Figure 6-1. Characteristics of
Nonverbal Communication
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6-11
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Many of our nonverbal behaviors employ
kinesics, the use of body motion to
communicate nonverbally
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6-12
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Facial Expressions
– Most nonverbal experts believe that your face is
the richest source of nonverbal clues
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6-13
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Eye Contact
– We seem to use prolonged eye contact to
compensate for lack of physical proximity
– Eye contact communicates involvement and
interest
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6-14
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Gestures
– Gestures are defined as a significant movement
of the body that expresses a message to a
receiver (Thomas 1991)
– Emblems are gestures with clear and specific
meanings
– Using Gestures to Regulate Interactions
– Using Gestures to Adjust or Adapt
– Using Gestures to Illustrate
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6-15
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Gestures (continued)
– Using Gestures to Regulate Interactions
• We use gestures to initiate, coordinate, and terminate
communication
– Using Gestures to Adjust or Adapt
• We also use gestures called adaptors to adjust or
adapt to our environment
– Using Gestures to Illustrate
• Speaker’s gestures, or illustrators, are important
communicative tools that emphasize, accent, or
clarify our verbal communication
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6-16
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Proxemics
– The study of space is called proxemics
• Personal Space
1. The intimate zone is the closest space and extends
approximately 18 inches form your body
2. The personal zone extends from 18 inches to four feet from
your body
3. The social zone extends four to eight feet from your body
4. The public zone extends beyond eight feet from your body
• Territoriality is the human need to mark and defend
space
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6-17
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Touch
– Haptics is the use of touch to communicate
nonverbally
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6-18
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Vocalics
– Vocalics is the use of the voice to communicate
nonverbally
• Probably the most important aspect of vocalics is
voice quality
1. Rate is how fast you talk
2. Volume is the loudness of your voice
3. Inflection is the vocal emphasis you place on words
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6-19
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Odor
– Odors are sometimes forgotten nonverbal cues,
our sensory environment is full of pleasant and
unpleasant smells that communicate a variety of
messages
– Culture plays a big role in what smells
communicate
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6-20
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Time
– Chronemics is the use of time to communicate
• Time as an Indicator of Money and Status
– Time is a strong indicator of power and status in our
society
• Time as an Indicator of Competence
• Cultural Views of Time
– Many cultures view time as circular, in which events
happen concurrently, called polychronic
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6-21
Types of Nonverbal Communication
• Artifacts
– Artifacts is the use of objects to communicate
nonverbally
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6-22
Communicating Responsibly:
Managing Nonverbal Cues Effectively
• Monitor Your Nonverbal Messages
– The first step toward using nonverbal
communication effectively is being conscious of
the messages you are sending
• Avoid Intrusive Nonverbal Cues
– Nonverbal communication is powerful, and it
can easily be misused in ways that violate the
privacy or to threaten others
McGraw-Hill
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6-23
Communicating Responsibly:
Managing Nonverbal Cues Effectively
• Remember the Cultural Context of
Nonverbal Cues
– Being sensitive to and tolerating the difference
between cultures is one of the most important
communication skills you can develop
McGraw-Hill
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6-24
Summary
• Nonverbal communication is nonlinguistic
and is often intrinsically connected to the
emotions we feel
• Nonverbal communication can augment,
repeat, or highlight words or phrases
• We use eye contact to compensate for lack
of physical proximity, to regulate verbal
interaction, to establish immediacy or
closeness with others, and to exert control or
dominance
McGraw-Hill
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6-25
Summary
• Kinesics is the use of body movement to
communicate nonverbally
• Proxemics is the use of space to
communicate nonverbally
• Touch conveys a variety of messages
depending upon the relationship of the
people touching
• We use our voice to communicate messages
other than words
McGraw-Hill
© 2006 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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