Communication Competence

Communication Competence

Communication Competence In this video we’ll review the concept of
intercultural communication competence. The information in this video provides a general
overview of the topic. Pease consult assigned readings on this topic
for more in-depth information. As the course progresses, many of the ideas
discussed in this video will be covered in more detail. A primary aim of this course is to help students
become more competent communicators across a wide variety of intercultural contexts. Communication competence is the ability to
communicate one’s wants, needs, and thoughts to others in ways that help maintain or improve
the current state of their relationships. Competent communicators have the want, knowledge,
and skill to communicate with others in ways that can keep the emotional tone of interactions
positive, supportive, and non-threatening. They also keep the content of their communication
appropriate for the context in which communication takes place, and can employ strategies to
manage conflict during communication when it occurs. So, to summarize, competent communicators:
want to maintain positive relationships, know which behaviors are appropriate for various
situations and can perform the behaviors effectively, keep the content of communication appropriate
to a given situation and, can manage conflict when it occurs during communication To become a competent communicator within
a cultural group, a person needs: First, extensive knowledge of the culture – a detailed understanding
of the culture’s values, beliefs, and behavioral patterns. Second, fluency of primary language or languages
– having knowledge of and the skill to appropriately follow semantic, pragmatic, and syntactic
rules of the language or languages used by the cultural group. And, third, a great deal of interaction with
members within the culture. It is through socializing with people within
a culture that individuals gain intricate knowledge of a culture, and its norms and
its rules for language use. While a person may be a highly competent communicator
in her or his primary culture, it does not necessarily follow that the person’s competence
will transfer to a different cultural setting. For a person to become a competent communicator
when interacting with individuals from a foreign culture, an additional set of attributes is
needed. For example, a person must have a relatively
high tolerance for ambiguity. When interactions include people from two
or more different cultures, one needs to be fairly comfortable communicating with people
who may have different ways of interacting and behaving than one is accustomed. For instance, a person needs to be able to
cope with situations where she or he doesn’t quite know the rules, may not be fluent in
the language being spoken, and may or may not agree with the views of others. Further, a person should be able to change
her or his behavior to accommodate the cultural expectations of others in the communication
situation. First recognizing then performing communication
behaviors appropriate for a cultural context is necessary to maintain effective communication. Other attributes of intercultural communication
competence are empathy and mindfulness. A person practices empathy when trying to
understand and mentally experience others’ situations and perspectives. Mindfulness occurs when a person actively
pays attention to a communication situation, and takes into consideration the ideas and
behaviors of others. It is important to note that one does not
necessarily need to agree with what she or he observes during an intercultural interaction. Empathy and mindfulness help a person to understand
why others think, communicate, and behave the way they do and to respect why they value
their perspectives. People are not born knowing how to communicate
with others. Communication is something that is learned. Just about anyone, with enough practice, can
learn to communicate competently across a wide variety of situations.

One thought on “Communication Competence

  1. @FlatGrin can I use your video for our presentation? Credits will be presented if ever permission will be granted. Thank you (^^)

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