:::: Paradigms and Communication Theory ::::
What is Communication?
First, let me define “communication”. It occurs when humans manipulate symbols
to stimulate meaning in others. "Communication refers to the processes by which
verbal and nonverbal messages are used to create and share meaning. This
definition acknowledges that communication is both a meaning-based, creative
process, as well as a tool used to exchange information." (Frey, L., Botan, C.,
& Kreps, G. (2000). Investigating communication. An introduction to research
methods. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall) Lets try to clarify this
hard-to-define concept. First, let me outline some elements used to understand
the meaning of communication. It is a symbolic process; it requires mutual
awareness (between participants); it involves intentionality; it has a shared
meaning; it has an individual interpretation of meaning, so it has a degree of
variability; and is shaped by the context surrounding it.
If you wish to know the Latin
roots of communication,
What Theory means?
want to consider its broadest definition, which is “any organized set of
concepts and explanations about a phenomenon.”* There are
important elements to emphasize in the definition of “theory”: it describes
“what”; it explains “how” and “why”; it predicts.
What is Communication Theory?
describes, explains and predicts social interaction involving the process of
symbols manipulation in order to stimulate meaning in others. Theories in
Communication and other fields tend to group in families. These families are
Looking for a Journal in
Communication Theory? Visit the journal published by the
Press web site.
What are paradigms?
They are “grand models” or sets of perspectives shared by many theories. It
defines the questions to be asked and the methods of discovering the answers to
these questions. Because human communication and interaction is such a complex
and multifaceted phenomenon, communication researchers use theoretical
perspectives to help them find the proper answer to their specific query. There
are three principal paradigms:
Danna Carballo, Fall 2003
New Media and New Markets @