Communication Theories Paper

Topics: Communication, Communication theory, Cognitive dissonance Pages: 3 (1179 words) Published: September 19, 2011
Communication theories paper
Amanda Haring
Com 310  

Communication is defined as a process by which information is exchanged between individuals through a common system of symbols, signs or behavior. Communication helps us understand one another. ("Communication", 2011). Communication is broken down into theories. Three examples of these theories would be the social penetration theory, cognitive dissonance theory and the uncertainty reduction theory.

The social penetration theory was created by professor Altman and Dalmas Taylor. This was their attempt to describe relationship closeness. They suggested that relationship closeness occurs only through a gradual process of self disclosure. Self disclosure is when people share information about their pasts, history, feelings, values, secrets etc, with another person. I have experienced this theory many times throughout my life. When you meet someone and begin to have a relationship with that person, you start to open up about things and that’s how you develop closeness with them. An example would be when I first met my husband. We were young and I was very shy. After a couple dates I began to open up to him and tell him about my family history, hobbies, friends, my goals in life etc. This brought us closer together because of our common interests. I love hiking and fishing, and when I told him, it turns out he has the same. We also like car shows, riding motorcycles and share a love for photography. Our common interest is what made our relationship come together. Another example would be my childhood friendship. I started school with the fear of having no friends. In first grade I met a girl named Caitlin. We instantly became friends once we started talking and opening up about common interests and goals. I told her I wanted to be a country music singer when I grew up, and she wanted to be the backup singer and guitar player in our band. Caitlin’s mother was absent throughout her childhood, and...

References: 1. Cognitive dissonance theory. (1997). Retrieved from
2. Communication. (2011). Retrieved from
3. Uncertainty reduction theory. (2011). Retrieved from
4. EBOOK COLLECTION: West, R. & Turner, L. (2004). Introducing Communication Theory: Analysis and Application. Boston: McGraw-Hill.
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