Understanding Human Communication

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Oxford University Press, 2003 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 524 pages
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Now in its eighth edition, this classic text by Ronald B. Adler and George Rodman retains the enduring features that have made it the best-selling introductory human communication text on the market: an engaging and reader-friendly writing style; an inviting visual design with marginal quotations, cartoons, photographs, newspaper clippings, and supplemental readings on every page; up-to-date information on technology, gender, and cultural diversity; and everyday applications based on solid research and theory. Maintaining the quality of presentation and student-focused pedagogy that have characterized previous editions, this new edition features updated examples, coverage of current communication theory, entirely new student-oriented sample speeches with new commentaries, and a commitment to equipping students with effective communication skills that will matter and make a difference in their everyday lives.
NEW TO THE EIGHTH EDITION
Improved Design and Pedagogy
Each chapter now opens with a list of cognitive and behavioral objectives so that students know precisely what they need to learn.
Activities are now integrated into the text--adjacent to the concepts they complement--allowing students to apply the material more easily to their lives.
New Feature Film Profiles
Using a medium that students already know and love, Understanding Human Communication, Eighth Edition, integrates current movies into instruction to effectively teach concepts and principles. New films include:
Cast Away
Shallow Hal
Pay It Forward
You've Got Mail
Clueless
At First Sight
Patch Adams
Dangerous Minds
Almost Famous
New Sidebar Topics
"Understanding Diversity" Sidebars show students how communication principles apply to people from different backgrounds. New topics include:
- doing business across cultures
- non-western views of modern medicine
- deafness and identity
"Understanding Communication Technology" Sidebars teach students how new technologies can expand and improve communication. New topics include:
- identity management on the Internet
- strategies for expressing emotions online
- using the World Wide Web to deliver difficult messages
- communicating in "virtual groups" on the web
- software to improve group decision-making
New Material on Public Speaking
The sample speeches in chapters 10, 11, 13, and 14 are completely new and accompanied by commentaries provided by the student speakers in addition to the authors' explanations.
This edition places greater emphasis on student informative speaking and includes a sample student speech.
This edition contains expanded guidelines for personalizing an informative speech.
Updated and Expanded Research and Examples
Throughout the new edition, many topics have been added, expanded, or updated to reflect current information and contemporary theory. For example:
Chapters 1-2
- how communication shapes and manages identity
- how narratives shape perceptions and frameworks for shared understanding
- how some communication aims at coordination, but not necessarily understanding
Chapter 3
- similarities and differences between male and female communication styles
- how children's names affect their identities
- examples of contemporary slang and jargon
Chapter 4
- personal listening styles
- the importance of listening in professional and personal life
- how cultural differences shape listening
- how communicators offer social support to others
Chapters 5-6
- deceptive communication
- when and why people disclose personal information
Chapters 10-14
- new demographic analyses of today's audiences
- the role of human communication in contemporary world events
- the new student activism
Media Appendix
- Cumulative Effects Theory
- how different theories lead to the observation of different effects
- how the media contributes to changes in language styles over time

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About the author (2003)

Ronald B. Adler, Professor of Communication, Santa Barbara City College. George Rodman, Professor of Television and Radio, CUNY, Brooklyn College.

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