The functional approaches to interpersonal communication emphasize the purposes served through communication. Dance and Larson (1976) found that communication connects individuals with their surroundings by helping them establish self-concepts (linking), allows individuals to shift from self-oriented to group-oriented tasks (mentation), and enables individuals to control their own or others' behavior (regulation). Another functional model illustrated relationship orientation according to four functions being served in relationshipsemotional-expressive, confirmatory, change-influence, and instrumental (Bennis, Schein, Steele, & Berlew, 1968).
Additionally, researchers incorporated Schutz's (1966) Fundamental Interpersonal Relations Orientation theory that identifies three fundamental needs satisfied by interpersonal communication. Inclusion is an individual's need to feel that he or she is part of a group. Control is the need to exude power over other people or to relinquish power to someone else. Affection is an individual's need to engage in a loving relationship with others.
Finally, they drew from the media uses and gratification theory. The primary focus of the uses and gratification research identifies the functions of media usesurveillance, correlation, entertainment, and socialization (Lasswell, 1948). Research then focused on motives for television viewing, and Rubin's (1981) research suggests... [continues]
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