Overall, I feel that this was a good start to my quest in learning more about communication and communication theory. I’ve always enjoyed taking online classes, and this was no exception. I feel that online courses are the future, and we have to embrace it! I’m actually teaching an online course next semester for the first time. I’m excited to see how it goes!
I was privileged enough to get to trade papers with Ken Dabb. I feel that he did a wonderful job on his basic inquiry paper. Taking the book, The Help, and applying it to women in the workplace was an ingenious idea. Reading his paper helped me with my own paper. He had great examples and his digital presentation really pulled everything together nicely. It was a pleasure to get to work with him on this paper.
Throughout this course, we’ve gone into great detail with the seven traditions in communication. The tradition that makes the most sense to me is Cybernetics. Cybernetics has a focus on the family unit. I feel that in many situations that I find myself in, it always comes down to being apart of a family. Whether it be my actual family, my work family, or my aerial arts family, I know that I’m part of a bigger system that needs to work together. According to the text, family members are not “isolated from one another and their relationship must be taken into account to fully understand the family system” (Littlejohn & Foss, 2011, p. 50). I understand that to have a cohesive working unit, all parts of the system must work together to accomplish goals.
Along with the traditions, we also discussed several theories. The theory that I “liked” the best, or best understood was the “Uncertainty Reduction Theory”. Basically, this theory is what all humans do to create connections with new people. We don’t like being uncertain about a person, so we ask questions and disclose our own information to create these connections and reduce uncertainty.
As far as my own experience with this tradition and theory, I’d have to say I’ve witnessed and experienced it at my new job. I’ve been working for a university for a little over two months now, and the dynamic is very much “family oriented”. Becoming apart of the family at first was difficult because of the uncertainty my coworkers felt about me because I was new. As I get to know my coworkers, I understand the “family system” and their uncertainty decreases about me.