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Understanding Human Communication 11th Edition

Understanding Human Communication 11th Edition

Author: Ronald B. Adler and George Rodman

Publisher: Oxford University Press


Publish Date: January 10, 2011

ISBN-10: 0199747385

Pages: 512

File Type: PDF

Language: English

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Book Preface

You can understand the philosophy that has shaped Understanding Human Com­ munication by trying a simple experiment. If you’re a professor, take a few mo­ments to jot down all the courses you recall taking as an undergraduate. If you’re a student, make a list of all the courses you can remember from high school. Next, circle the courses that have an ongoing benefit in your life.

If you’re like most people, you only recalled a fraction of the courses where you spent so many hours. Of the courses you did remember, it’s likely that only a few of them made a lasting positive impact. Our intention in writing this book has been to insure that the course in which it’s used will be one of those memorable ones that change your life for the better. Beyond understanding and appreciating how human communication operates, we hope that this book and the course in which it’s used will help you communicate more effectively in the situations that count, and with the people who matter to you.

We remain convinced that the best way to measure this book’s value is to ask three questions: Is its content important? Is the material clear? Is it useful? Our goal has been to focus on topics that are absolutely essential and present them so that every sentence delivers an informational payoff worth the space it occupies. You are the best judge of how well we have succeeded.

New in This Edition

Given our quickly changing world, the reasons for this updated edition are compelling. Several structural changes reflect how communication operates in contemporary society.
• Most noticeable is the all-new Chapter 2, “The Changing World of Communica­tion.” True to its title, this chapter reveals how the nature of communication and the discipline that focuses on it have changed in the opening decades of the twenty-first century. Major sections deal with demographic and cultural influences that shape and reflect how we interact with others, and with the ways in which technologies have created both new opportunities and new challenges. The chapter also presents a snapshot of the academic field of communication and shows how it has evolved to reflect the changing nature of human interaction.
• New “@Work” boxes in every chapter show you how key concepts from the text operate in the workplace. Topics include how multitasking can interfere with face-to­face interaction, building social capital for career enhancement, dealing with sexual harassment, and working in virtual groups.
A new appendix, “Communicating for Career Success,” provides a wealth of in­formation to help students launch and grow in their chosen careers. Sections cover both preemployment strategies designed to help you get the job you want and strate­gies for communicating in ways that enhance advancement throughout your career.
• We suggest to our students that the value of this material alone can justify keeping Understanding Human Communication long after finishing the class in which it was used.

The streamlined and reorganized Part Five gives students a quicker and more ef­ficient entry to the art and science of public speaking. The new Chapter 11, “Prepar­ing Speeches,” synthesizes material on choosing and developing a topic ( from the previous edition’s Chapter 10) as well as managing communication apprehension (previously in Chapter 12). After completing this chapter, students will be ready to deliver their first classroom speech.

In addition to improvements like these, material has been updated throughout the book to reflect the latest scholarship. For example, Chapter 3 explains how we perceive strangers differently in mediated and face-to-face communication. Chapter 4 explains how cultural identity is reflected in linguistic labels by which we describe others. Chap­ter 5 introduces research describing how hearing loss affects relationships. Chapter 6 provides new information on nonverbal cues to deception. A new section in Chapter 7 describes how dealing with conflicts online differs from doing so in person, and Chapter 8 contains new information on how gender influences conflict style. Chapter 11 now offers guidelines for citing information gathered from web searches.
Finally, we have made some changes to the test bank for this edition, adding 20% more questions, revising others, and including more challenging questions.

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