The graded project is intended to help you integrate the
various communication techniques and skills you’ve been
practicing and studying. The completed project will give
your instructor an accurate gauge by which to measure
your understanding and mastery of these important skills.
More importantly, completion of the project gives you the
opportunity to apply your new skills in a real-life situation— and perhaps even show off a little in the process!
For your graded project, you have to choose one of two
options: write an essay of 500-800 words or write and present a speech of two-to-three minutes. The second option requires the use of equipment which isn’t supplied by the school. As you work on the project, review pertinent lesson material in your study unit, the Graded Project booklet, and the Voice
and Diction audio file.
Review the work you completed for the Nonverbal Listening
Patterns exercise. Write a 500–800 word essay on your experience with this exercise, discussing the following points:
• The steps you took to complete the Nonverbal Listening
• What you learned about your own interpersonal communication behaviors or skills
• The steps you can take to improve or maintain each
behavior or skill
Step 1: Write from your point of view using the pronoun I.
Use the past tense for your verbs since you’re reporting on what has already occurred.
Your first paragraph should summarize information about
the exercise—the identity of the two people (supervisor,
friend, relative, etc.), how well you know each person, where the exercise took place, when it occurred, and how long it
took to complete it. Also, give the main topic of each conversation In your second paragraph, describe specific examples of your nonverbal listening behavior for posture, eye contact, gestures, and facial expressions with one of the people. (Be sure
to indicate how comfortable you felt with that person.)
Explain and analyze why you behaved in these ways during
the conversation. Was your behavior appropriate for that conversation given what you have learned about proper communication
skills? Why or why not?
In your third paragraph, provide the same type of discussion but with the second person.
In your fourth paragraph, continue by discussing at least
three non-verbal listening behaviors or skills that you discovered about yourself during these conversations. You may discuss
your weak skills, your strong skills, or a combination of
the two. Since this essay is a self-analysis of your skills, you will want to identify both your weak and your strong points. With each skill you describe, also explain how you intend to improve the weaker skills and maintain the stronger skills
that you identified in the previous paragraph. Exactly what
can you do to make and keep your nonverbal listening
behaviors effective? Also, discuss how you can determine
your status and progress toward improvement.
In your final paragraph, discuss your reaction to the activity and analyze your non-verbal listening behaviors. Summarize
the insights you have gained about your communication
Step 2: Read your essay aloud and listen for areas where
you may have missed some words or your sentences are
awkwardly constructed. You may want to ask someone to
read it to you exactly as you have written it. Listen for clear, logical flow of your ideas and discussion. Edit your essay
carefully according to the standard conventions for academic compositions: coherent paragraph development, varied sentence structure, correct grammar, word usage, spelling, and
punctuation. Remember to use the pronouns I, me, and my,
since you are writing about your own experience from your
point of view. Also, use the past tense for your verbs. Further revise and edit according to the evaluation criteria given
Introduction (5 points)
You describe the exercise and the...