“Communication is the process by which individuals use symbols, signs, and behaviors to exchange information. Competent communication depends on the process more than the outcome, in which what is said and done, and how it is said and done, holds greater significance than the outcome of the interaction” (Laureate, 2011). How do I perceive myself as a communicator? Am I able to determine what is appropriate in a variety of situations and contexts? Are my nonverbal behaviors congruent with what I say? Am I an attentive listener?
This week, I was able to examine how my own personal schema’s influenced how I might perceive others. I was also able to assess and analyze various communication styles and skills. I was also able to evaluate myself as a communicator and compare it to how others evaluated me as a communicator, listener, and my level of verbal aggressiveness.
Interested in taking the quiz for yourself? Just visit the links below. Then chose two people you know and have them fill out the evaluation as well.
Communication: Communication is “the process by which we use symbols, signs, and behaviors to exchange information. Successful communication allow us to satisfy our most basic needs, from finding food… to developing meaningful relationships” (O’Hair & Wiemann, 2015, p. 4).
In this assessment I scored a 59. According to the results of the assessment, if your score fell between the range of 47–59, you have a moderate level of communication anxiety. This indicates “that you feel somewhat concerned about a number of communication contacts, but probably not all. This is the midpoint level of communication anxiety we can call ‘situational’” (Rubin, R. B., Palmgreen, P., & Sypher, H. E. (Eds.), 2009, Communication Anxiety Inventory). In contrast, my sister gave me a score of 35. This indicated that I may feel “a bit uneasy in some communication situation and someone more confident in other contexts. Communication does not seem to be something that you worry a great deal about” (Rubin, R. B., Palmgreen, P., & Sypher, H. E. (Eds.), 2009, Communication Anxiety Inventory).
Verbal Aggressiveness: This is when there is an underlying message in how the communicator “gains control over different things that occur, through the usage of verbal aggressiveness… and is thought to be mainly a destructive form of communication” (Wikipedia, 2020). Verbal Aggressiveness is basically defined as “a predisposition to attack the self-concept of others;” it’s normally associated with “name-calling, the use of threats, and ultimatums” (Infante & Gass, n.d.). With this assessment, I scored a 67; which is moderate. It states I “maintain a good balance between respect and consideration for others’ viewpoints, and the ability to argue fairly by attacking the facts of the position rather than the person holding that position” (Rubin, R. B., Palmgreen, P., & Sypher, H. E. (Eds.), 2009, Verbal Aggressiveness Scale).
In comparison I received a 60 from one of the individuals and a 74 from another. Like the 67, the score of 60 fell in the moderate level of verbal aggressiveness. The 74 fell in the significant level of verbal aggressiveness. This means “with little provocation, you might cross the line from “argumentativeness,” which attacks a person’s position or statements, and verbal aggression, which involves personal attacks and can be hurtful to the listener” (Rubin, R. B., Palmgreen, P., & Sypher, H. E. (Eds.), 2009, Verbal Aggressiveness Scale).
Listening Style: Listening is defined as “the process of recognizing, understanding, accurately interpreting, and responding effectively to the messages communicated by others” (O’Hair & Wiemann, 2015, p. 152). It’s more than just hearing words and being able to repeat what you heard. For this assessment, I scored a 35. This places me in Group 1: a People-Oriented listening style. According to this style, I am “empathetic and concrned with the emotions of others. This listening style helps you to build relationships, but it can interfere with proper judgement because you tuen to be very trusting to others” (Rubin, R. B., Rubin, A. M., Graham, E. E., Perse, E. M., & Seibold, D. R. (Eds.), 2009, Listening Profile Styles). When recieving the score from my selected individuals, I received a 42 and a 45; which places me in the same group I scored in prior.
As I reflect on the similarities and differences between how I evaluated myself as a communicator and how others evaluated me, I was surprised to see the results. I knew that my listening skills were people-oriented. I know that I tend to put others before myself and I always want to see others happy. What surprised me the most was my level of verbal aggressiveness. I believed I maintained a “good balance between respect and consideration for others’ viewpoints” but one of peers said that I may “cross the line from “argumentativeness,” which attacks a person’s position or statements, and verbal aggression, which involves personal attacks and can be hurtful to the listener.” After seeing that it put some other things into perspective and I thought outside of the professional area and looked at my personal life. It made me think, “Do I talk too aggressively to my family members and/or friends?” These assessments had allowed me to look at myself through the lens or eyes of my family members, peers, and collegues. It made me gain some insight as to how I interact with others outside of my professional field, as well as within my field of interest.
I would definately encourage others to take this assessment. I’ve always been a person for positive change but as it’s been said, “if you want to see a change, it must begin with you.”
Infante, D. & Gass, R. (n.d.). Argumentativeness and Verbal Aggressiveness
Two Argument-related “Traits”. Retrieved from https://oregonstate.edu/instruct/comm321/gwalker/VerbalAggressive.html
Laureate Education (Producer). (2011). Communication and Collaborating in the Early Childhood Field: Who Am I as a Communicator? Retrieved from http://class.waldenu.edu.
O’Hair, D., Wiemann, M., Mullin, D. I., Teven, J. (2015). Real Communication: An introduction (3rd ed.). New York: Bedford/St. Martin’s. p. 4).
O’Hair, D., Wiemann, M., Mullin, D. I., Teven, J. (2018). Real Communication: An introduction (4th ed.). New York: Bedford/St. Martin’s. pp. 62-68.
Rubin, R. B., Palmgreen, P., & Sypher, H. E. (Eds.) (2009). Communication research measures: A sourcebook. New York: Routledge. (Communication Anxiety Inventory). Retrieved from http://mym.cdn.laureate-media.com/2dett4d/Walden/EDUC/6165/04/mm/quiz/quiz_communication/index.html
Rubin, R. B., Palmgreen, P., & Sypher, H. E. (Eds.) (2009). Communication research measures: A sourcebook. New York: Routledge. (Verbal Agressiveness Scale). Retrieved from http://mym.cdn.laureate-media.com/2dett4d/Walden/EDUC/6165/04/mm/quiz/quiz_verbal/index.html
Rubin, R. B., Rubin, A. M., Graham, E. E., Perse, E. M., & Seibold, D. R. (Eds.) (2009). Communication research measures II: A sourcebook. New York: Routledge. (Listening Profile Styles). Retrieved from http://mym.cdn.laureate-media.com/2dett4d/Walden/EDUC/6165/04/mm/quiz/quiz_listening/index.html
Wikipedia. (2020). Verbal Aggressiveness. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verbal_aggressiveness