comm theory

  1. Is theory relevant?
    • -Predicts how events and actions are related
    • -Theories help practitioners expalin and predict human behavior and communication and guide organizational decision making
  2. Communication Goals
    • Effective communicators understand:
    • 1. How ppl receive messages
    • 2. How ppl process info and change their perceptions
    • 3. What media and tools are most effective for messages
  3. Communication Theories
    Communication theories center around the most effective ways to send messages to elicit desired responses
  4. Mass Communication Theories
    -Traditional/ Historical Theories
    • -Mass Society Theories
    • -Limited effects theory
    • -Two-step flow Theory
    • - Concentric Circle Theory
    • -Spiral of Silence Theory
  5. Mass Society Theories
    • *Dominant from 1890s through 1950s
    • -Saw mass media (press, radio) as having too powerful of an effect on masses and were a threat to the social order.
    • -Promulgated by elite who were afraid they'd lose their grasp on power. Mostly discredited.
  6. Limited Effects Theory
    • -*Paul Lazarsfeld's Voters Studies...1940s and 1950s
    • -Showed media had a limited effect on most adults
    • -They formed opinions based on family, friends, peers and institutions (churches, schools)
  7. Two-Step Flow Theory
    • -*Organization sends a message through mass media and depends on media to deliever.
    • -Flawed- Media are a filter and do not guarantee recipients will read and or understand message properly.
  8. Concentric Circle Theory
    • -*Opinion Leadership
    • -Ideas evolve in concentric circles

    Great thinkers-> Great Disciples-> Great disseminators-> Lesser disseminators->Politically Active ->Politically Inert
  9. Spiral of Silence Theory
    • -Elisabeth Noelle Neumann...1970s
    • -The silent majority, often fearing disenfranchisement, goes with the majority. Peer PRESSURE.
    • -Some communications that work well depend on the nonparticipation of the so-called silent majority. (tutition increase, if no public outcry, goes through)
Card Set
comm theory