The different types of nonverbal communication
The study of how humans use distance and the arrangement of space to communicate with one another. How do you react when someone “invades your space” by standing too close to you? What do you do if someone invades your territory, such as your room? According to Edward T. Hall, Americans use four spatial zones.
- Intimate space: 0 to 1 1/2 feet. Reserved for our most personal relationships.
- Personal space: 1 1/2 to 4 feet. Used for conversations with close friends and acquaintances; touch is possible. You will notice someone if they stand in your personal space.
- Social space: 4 to 12 feet. Used for impersonal and social gatherings. More formal tone, louder speech, increased eye contact.
- Public space: 12 feet and up. Used for lectures, concerts, plays, speeches; subtle details lost; usually limited to one-way communication.
Watch the Invading Personal Space in Public video (4:07) and take notes on:
- How people respond to a stranger coming into their personal space.
Invading Personal Space in Public video (4:07)
Watch the Nonverbal Code: Proxemics (Space) video (7:31) and take notes on:
- Edward T. Hall findings of Proxemics
- Define the spacial zones and what type of communication can occur in these spaces
- Intimate space
- Personal space
- Social space
- Public space
Nonverbal Code: Proxemics (Space) video (7:31)
High Contact: people stand close and touch each other a lot. For example, Middle East countries, Latin countries, Greece, Spain, Portugal, and Italy, African Americans. Low Contact: people stand apart and tend not to touch. Japan, USA, England, Scandinavia What is the relationship between touch and attitudes? Here in the United States, there are several important findings about touch. Most recently, a Georgia University found that a lack of touch for infants was linked to the lack of brain development. The less touch children receive the more likely they are to become violent adults. Touch has been positively linked to our attitudes. We tend to like people better who touch.
Watch the Nonverbal Code: Haptics (touch) video (8:48) and take notes on:
- Explain Haptics and the two categories of touch
- High Contact and Low Contact
- What is the relationship between touch and attitudes?
- How do we use touch to communicate?
Nonverbal Code: Haptics (touch) video (8:48)
The study of body movement and how it is used to communicate
|Emblems are nonverbal behaviors that have a direct verbal counterpart, such as making the “okay” sign with your hand and fingers.Illustrators are nonverbal behaviors that accompany another message, but they mean nothing on their own, such as shrugging your shoulders. Regulators are nonverbal behaviors that help us monitor the flow of communication, such as holding up your hand to make a stop motion to indicate you are not done speaking.Adaptors are personal body movements that occur as a reaction to an individuals’ physical or psychological state. For example, some people bite their fingernails when they are nervous.Oculesics is the study of how eye contact and gaze are used to communicate. Bob Dylan once sang “Your eyes said more to me that night than your lips would ever say.” Most cultures agree that the eyes are a powerful source of communicationAffect displays are facial and body movements that show feeling and emotion. Some researchers estimate that human beings are capable of over 250,000 facial expressions. Research also indicates the following 6 facial universal expressions to be innate (biological factors).|
The study of time and how it is used to communicate. The use of time can express both intentional and unintentional messages.
The use of time depends largely on culture. In some cultures, punctuality is critically important, whereas in others it is barely considered. Cultures such as those of the United States, Canada, and northern Europe, value time highly, waiting can be an indicator of status.
The way a message is spoken. Vocal rate, pronunciation, pitch, tone, volume, and emphasis can give the same word or words many meanings. This is why people say “it’s not what you said, it’s how you said it.”
Watch this brief clip from Friends. What does Rachel and Joey’s paralanguage saying about how they feel? How can we tell Ross is not “fine”, even when he claims he is?
Objectics (Artifacts) –
Physical Attractiveness & Clothing
Physical attractiveness has been found to affect interactions between people. People communicate differently to those that look a certain way. Same as clothing. Clothing can convey many messages to others such as culture, economic level, social position, educational background, interests/hobbies, etc. It’s important that we avoid making snap judgments based on appearance and clothing.
Physical settings, architecture, and interior design affect communication. For instance, if you were to come to my house, you would get a good sense of my personality by how it is designed. Recall the different homes you’ve visited lately. Where some of them more inviting than others? We can get to know someone by just observing their workspace, homes, and cars.