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What is theory?

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on 14 January 2016

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Transcript of What is theory?

What is Communication?
"Communication is the
process of


elicit a response

Messages (Text)
Creation of Messages
Content and form of text a conscious choice by communicator
Interpretation of Messages
"Words don't mean things, people mean things."
Relational Process
Affects nature of connections b/t people.
Messages Elicit a Response
Falling on deaf ears?
Is Communication Happening Here?
Common Terminology
for Objective Approach
What is theory?
"systematic and self-conscious discussion/analysis of communication phenomenon."

Not so Proper:
"set of systematic informed hunches about the way things operate."
arranged in or comprising an order; methodical; involving a system, a method, a plan.
What is the truth?
What is the origin, nature, method, and limits of knowledge?
Types of Epistomology
Behavioral Scientists:
Truth is singular. There is one reality
(heredity and environment). Predictability.
Truth socially constructed. There are multiple realities.
Free Will
: Action based on conscious intent; free agents respond different under same sitch
One view is problematic for the other.
An Interpretivist Example:
Different Types of Theorists
Objective Approach (Realism, Positivism)
Behavioral Scientist
Explain and Predict
Quantitative Research
Interpretive Approach (Relativism)
Textual Analysis, Deconstructivist, Ethnography, Phenomenology, Critical Scholars
Concerned with assigning meaning (Dramatistic pentad as a framework)
Qualitative Research
Images of Theory
Humanistic Scholarship
Studying what it's like to be another human in a specific time and place.
Norwegian Politician in the current decade.
Newcomers in an organization who are having trouble fitting in.
Learning how to use a new technology
Beauty as a Social Construct?
What's in focus?
Such thing as a grand comm theory?
Guides us through unfamiliar territory
Beauty by Decade
Beauty by Culture
What do these types of researchers value most?
: Don't allow personal biases to get in way of data. Let evidence speak for itself
: Embrace your values and allow them to influence your research/interpretation. (Critical researchers role is to liberate, etc.)
Is knowledge neutral?
One size fits all
One of a kind
Theories We'll Cover in This Class
Different People, Different Lenses...
Same event (image), Different Interpretation
Full transcript