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Critical Listening

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Meredith Diamond

on 30 October 2013

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Transcript of Critical Listening

There are three tests to use
Critical Listening
Skills involved in Critical Listening
Aristotle says
Ethos, Logos, Pathos!
Skills Related to Logos
Evaluating Evidence
- the thought content or logical arguments
Evaluating Arguments
Toulmin Model of Reasoning
Helps the listener become more aware of how any particular message is set up to determine truth and validity
Arguments generally consist of the following elements:
The Need for Critical Listeners
(claims, propositions, generalizations)- statements about issues, people, ideas, events, etc., that the speaker advances and wants the listener to accept.

- supporting information that the speaker use to prove their premise, to lead to their conclusion, and to make the premise acceptable to the listener.

- the thought process that the speaker goes through in order to connect the evidence to the premise.

- a statement that is based on premises, is a re-expression of premises, is mere consequences of premises, and/or is supported by evidence.
Ethos- Speaker Credibility
We are flooded with persuasive messages on a daily basis, more than ever before.
--Candidates’ campaign speeches, radio and TV commercials, editorials, artists’ songs, PSAs, doctors’ recommendations, employers’ suggestions, classroom lectures, sales pitches, etc.
-- We must be effective critical listeners if we are to protect and control ourselves rather than allowing others to control us.

Critical Thinking and Persuasion
"Join I triple E...Trust me I'm a dcotor"
Well-supported arguments must have:
- believability of premises and evidence

- acceptability of the relationships between all the premises and evidence presented and all the conclusions reached
Evaluating Inductive Arguments
Logos-appeal to logic
What is an inductive argument?
Reasoning by which one arrives at a conclusion or generalization through examining specific, factual data of the same kind or class.
Reasoning from the specific to the general… speaker compares a number of instances to conclude that all other instances are the same
"Putin knows when the world will end"
Pathos-physiological appeal
Determining the Truth of an Inductive Argument
Ask yourself the following questions:
1) Are the validating data true?
2) Are enough cases cited?
3) Are the cited instances representative of the whole being considered? Are they typical or atypical?
4) Is the class of persons, events, or instances about which the induction is made reasonably comparable in all relevant aspects?
5) Are there exceptions that do not lead to the expected conclusions? Are these exceptions accounted for?
Critical Thinking and Critical Listening
--Critical thinking helps students better understand their own approaches to analyzing information and solving problems.
--Analysis, evaluation and inference are central to critical thinking (Facione).
--Application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation of info are the most commonly stated skills in critical thinking definitions.
--Students say they wish they could just memorize because evaluation of ideas is too hard.
--Metacognitive or self-monitoring skills should be included in critical thinking
--Communication skills and listening skills are central to critical thinking, as well.
Analyze the soundness of the argument and evidence
"your ten dollars a month can helpa child stay alive"
Detecting Fallacious Testimony and Unreliable Sources
Is the source who is making the testimony, or who is being cited, an expert on the subject for which he or she is being quoted?
Know these three factors:
1.) The name of the source
2.) The source's credentials
3.) The sources experience with the subject material being discussed
Evaluating Deductive Arguments
1.) Clarity - How clear and intelligent the argument is
2.) Accuracy - How true, precise, and correct the argument is
3. Reliability - How dependable, trustworthy, and credible the source is
Dimensions of Source Credibility
- Is the speaker honest, reliable, fair-minded, and sincere? what is the speaker intent?

-Is the speaker competent in, an authority on, and experienced in the subject about which he or she is speaking?

-Does the speaker have personal magnetism, forcefulness, enthusiasm?

Dimensions and Influence of source Credibility
The Power of Goodwill
Making the people feel like you care about them!
What is a deductive argument?
syllogistic structure
- reasoning from a systematic arrangement of arguments consisting of a proposition stating a generalization (referred to as the major premise), a proposition stating a specific instance related to the generalization (the minor premise), and a conclusion that necessarily must follow from the premises.
Reasoning from the general to the specific… implies that what is presumed true of all members of a kind or class is true of some members of that kind or class
Determining the truth of a Deductive Argument
Important Key Terms
- truncated deductive arguments/
modified forms of rhetorical syllogisms that have one or more of their premises or conclusions omitted
disjunctive argument
- argument structured by the speaker with either-or alternatives
conditional argument
- two alternatives, following from each other, are set up. Becomes an If-then scenario.

Detecting Reasoning Fallacies
We can't assume that all speakers present sound arguments. We must be able to recognize fallacies so that we can reject the false claims
Ask yourself the following questions:

Consists of 6 Parts:
- represents all the evidence used by the speaker
- the conclusion, the assertion drawn by the communicator
- functions as the link between the evidence and the claim
backing for the warrant
(support)- any evidence or reasoning used to make the warrant acceptable to you, the listener
- expresses the degree of certainty inherent in the claim
- any dimensions that reduce the certainty of the claim
1) Is the generalization (major premise) universally true?
2) Does the specific item really belong to the general class?
3) Does the speciem represent an exception to the cited general class?
The Process of Persuasion
--As listeners in mass and public situations involving persuasive messages, problem-solving groups, interpersonal dialogues with different points of view, and reflective intrapersonal communication, we should function as both critical thinkers and critical listeners.
--As an individual matures, development of abilities and incremental skills do, too.
Analysis Test
Distinguishing among Facts, Opinions, and Inferences
Class Participation Game
Truths that are known to exist. They can be determined by observation, or verified through a reliable source
Statements of personal judgments and preferences. They are open to dispute, but they can neither be proved nor disproved because they are expressions of the possessor’s own perception
Statements of interpretation, which, limited only by the source’s imagination, can be made by anyone anytime. They are a sources guesses or conclusions at what is not known, made on the basis of what is known
Detecting Propaganda
An expression of opinion, or fact or alleged fact, or it is action-calculated to influence the opinions and actions of groups and individuals, with reference to some predetermined end. Simply put, propaganda is a form of persuasion that is designed to influence the listener to accept or reject some cause, view, person, action, or such
Propaganda Techniques that a Critical Listener should Recognize
Attaching an unfavorable/objectionable label to a person, object, event, or cause to encourage disapproval or rejection. Ex: extremist, wimp
Glittering Generality
Attaching a vague, but virtuous-sounding label to a person, object, event, or cause to encourage approval or acceptance. Ex: Dedicated to equality, state-of-the-art
Associating positive qualities of a respected person, group, party, object, or cause with the person, object, event, or cause expounded by the propagandist. Ex: Puritan work ethic
Plain Folks Appeal
Attempting to identify with the audience by adopting the language, dress, or behavior of the listeners.
Manipulating evidence so and giving only the evidence that supports the propagandist’s cause and proposition
Deliberately suppressing basic elements of the argument/story, of which the propagandist has knowledge, by only telling the part of the argument/story that he or she favors.
Using phrases and sentences to create the impression of universal approval and ignoring individuality. Ex: “Millions can’t be wrong,” “Don’t be left out”
Hasty Generalizations
The propagandist draws unwarranted, general conclusion from an insufficient number of cases.
Propagandists will often have recognizable people, such as popular actors or models, make statements agreeing with the propagandist’s position even though the statements may be false or the speaker has little credibility on the subject matter.
Research says there is impact from credibility!
Initial Ethos
- Operates before message is presented. Can influence listener if the speaker has prestige, authority, and reputations
Derived Ethos
-the speakers credibility can be developed
during the speech. Enhanced through techniques the speaker uses to demonstrate his or her character, knowledge,and goodwill.

Influence of Image
How you present yourself to the public
Ex. Politician
News Anchors
listener expectations of what a person should wear
in a particular role can affect the perceptions of the individuals trustworthiness.
Types of Fallacies
Hasty Generalization
the speaker drawing unwarranted, general conclusions from an insufficient number of cases (instances)

ex/ school has been vandalized by some long-haired youths. Principal says that ALL long-haired youths are bad
Faulty Causal Reasoning
some speakers, recognizing that other factors do contribute to the effect, speak of one event being the cause of another because it is the important difference

ex/ Betty may say, "My allergy disappeared the day after I took Clogless. I certainly recommend the use of that medicine!"
Post hoc, ergo proper hoc
(after this, therefore, because of this)- the speaker supposed that because one event follows another event, the first is the cause of the second

ex/ a baseball player ate pizza before his game and hit his first home run. He believes that because he ate the pizza, he hit the home run
Faulty Analogical Reasoning
The assertion that cases that resemble each other in some respects will resemble each other in some other respects
⁃ Used when speakers assume (1) that shared properties will continue to indefinitely and/or (2) that shared properties are similar in all aspects relevant to the issue being discussed, when in truth they are not
⁃ ex/ Mary tells her friend, "Leving Motors fixed my care really well; it hasn't needed a repair for years. I bet it can fix your car troubles as well!" She assumes that the shared properties (two cars and each-at on time- in need of repair) will continue indefinitely and that the shared properties are similar in all relevant aspects
Non Sequitur
("it does not necessarily follow")- refers to the widely irrelevant conclusion although it is involved in all invalid syllogisms, since they claim that a conclusion follows when it does not
Arguing in a Circle
speaker tries to prove a given statement with another statement that depends for its proof upon the first statement
Ignoring the Issue
speaker uses irrelevant arguments to cloud the real issue
ad hominem argument
- attacking the personal character of the source of the statement rather than focusing on the content of the issue itself
ad populum argument
- appealing to the people in terms of their prejudices and passions rather than focusing on the issues at hand
ad ignoratiam argument
- speaker attempts to prove that a statement is true (or false) because it cannot be disproved (or proved)
1. Persuasion: when one party convinces another party to voluntarily change their behavior, mentally and/or physically, by appealing to feelings and intellect.
-Example: being told to vote for a candidate because he can accomplish his campaign promises.
-Effective persuasion results in a behavioral change when the message is presented more than once.
2. Coercion: when the receiver is given no choice or a choice between highly undesirable alternatives.
-Example: being told to stop smoking because you will die of lung cancer.
-Most messages do not fit neatly into the persuasive or coercion category but fall somewhere along the continuum between the two extremes.
-Advertising, propaganda, political campaigns, religion, education and social influence will share elements of persuasion and coercion.
Factors Affecting Influences
Usually takes the form of a psychological sequence called the motivated sequence. To persuade or to be persuaded, the message must include…
-Attention: getting the attention of the listener
-Need: demonstrating the problem or the need for the proposal
-Satisfaction: presenting the proposal to satisfy the need
-Visualization: illustrating what will happen if the proposal is accepted or what will happen if it is rejected
-Action: issuing a challenge or an appeal to the listener
The Process of Influence
Understanding the process of persuasion as it applies to listeners will help listeners make careful judgments about whether they are listening to “informative” messages that are really rumors or to persuasive messages.
The psychological appeal
used by the speaker to
gain emotional response
from the listener.
Persuasive Appeals
Monroe's Emotional Appeals
Maintain rationality
and objectivity
Skills Related to Pathos
Third component of persuasion...
Maslow's Hierarchy
of Needs
Physiological Needs
Safety Needs
Social motivators
Esteem needs
Must fulfill lower needs
before reaching self-actualization
Hopes and Fears
Values that most powerfully motivate us to respond
Reveals conscious and unconscious needs
Personal Hopes
better or decent standard of living
good health for self
economic stability in general
happy family life
peace of mind
emotional maturity
Hopes for the Nation
economic stability
no inflation
improved standard of living in general
law and order
Fears for the Nation
economic instability
lack of law and order
Personal Fears
lower standard of living
ill health for self
economic instability in general
Salespeople, advertisers, and others trying to sell a product can abuse a person's
hidden needs
(1) What is the speaker’s intent?
(2) Is the speaker attempting to manipulate me?
(3) Does the speaker have honest motives?
(4) Is the speaker making promises that he or she cannot fulfill?
(5) Who will benefit if the speaker’s intent is achieved?
(6) Does the speaker combine emotional appeal with reasoning (evidence)?
(7) How am I responding?
(8) Am I responding on a purely emotional level?
(9) Am I allowing my emotional weaknesses to be exploited?
How the proposal can save you money
Ex: Outlet malls “factory discount prices”

(5) Curiosity
Seeking answers to why, when, where, who, what, how
Ex: Salesperson keeping name of product hidden until end
(7) Fear
Presenting a sense of threat to the receiver, which attempts to motivate the receiver to act
Ex: Preventing the spread of HIV
(8) Fighting
Prior to using the destruction appeal, a speaker often tries to arouse anger of his or her listeners
Ex: Political attack ads
(9) Guilt
(10) Imitation
Strongly motivates Americans to quench our thirst and satisfy our hunger with products endorsed by celebrities
Ex: Michael Jordan’s Nike sneakers
(11) Independence
Motivation to have a sense of independence
Ex: Cigarette or automobile ads
(13) Personal enjoyment
Longing for sensory and psychic pleasures such as comfort, luxury, security, contentment, beauty, recreation, freedom, space, and sensory satisfaction
Ex: Riding in a Mercedes Benz and never feeling a pothole
(15) Pride
Recognizing the motivational force of individual self-esteem, speakers frequently strive to develop a positive self-concept in their listeners
Ex: Coaches telling players to “give it their all”
(16) Reverence
Manifestations of hero worship -- having deep admiration for sports stars, entertainers, or historical figures
Ex: Senator John Danforth’s book, Resurrection
(18) Sexual attraction
Associates the beautiful people with a product
Ex: Calvin Klein advertisements
(1) Acquisition and savings
(2) Adventure

Desire to explore new worlds, experience exciting
occurrences, and participate in different events is
often stressed
Ex: Amusement and theme parks, travel agencies
(3) Companionship
Arouses in us the desire to be with other people
Ex: Big Red gum ads showing how fresh breath derived from chewing the gum enables two people to hold a tight kiss “a little longer.”
(4) Creativity
A way to express ourselves
Ex: Arts and craft shows, do-it-yourself kits
(6) Destruction
Desire to overthrow a factor that has become a problem
Ex: Education system riots
Source Credibility: on the Independent Effects of Trust and Expertise
Joshua L. Wiener, Oklahoma State University
John C. Mowen, Oklahoma State University
The principle that operates is one of trustworthiness and belief
"The trustworthiness manipulation was based upon Kelly's (1973) augmenting-discounting ideas. In the study subjects received messages from a mechanic concerning the mechanical condition and value of an automobile. In the high trust conditions, subjects learned that a car mechanic had no relation to a nearby automobile dealership. In the low trust conditions the mechanic was described as part owner of the automobile dealership. Hence, trustworthiness was equated in this study with intrinsic self-interest."
"Prestige influence"
A way to make up for some skill you lack
Ex: Busy, working parents buying expensive toys for children
(12) Loyalty
Loyalty to our nation, our friends and family, and our organizations
is an important characteristic for people
Ex: Products and ads emphasizing “Made in America”
(14) Power and authority
Motivator may appeal to people wanting more responsibility and importance
Ex: Auto industry persuading buyers to purchase larger engines
(17) Revulsion
Motivate listeners to act on a specific fear
Ex: Speaker illustrating effects of water pollution may show photographs and cite statistics on the effects of pollution
(19) Sympathy
Motivating us to give our time, money, and talents so they can gain support for their causes and own elections

Ex: Speaker who depicts homeless children, mistreated elderly, or forgotten veterans
Full transcript