COM 508

Nonverbal Communication
Fall, 2017


Questions to Guide Your Readings of Theories

Reading 46 Interpersonal Deception Theory

1. According to this theory, what are three things you could do to become a better lie detector? Any risks in doing these three things?

Reading 52 Accommodation Nonverbally (CAT)

1. What is the message sent by intentional convergence? divergence?

2. Why do people not like or appreciate complete convergence by others?

Reading 55 Converging on the Phenomenon of Interpersonal Adaptation: Interaction Adaptation Theory (IAT)

1. What are the key ideas in IAT?

2. How does IAT differ from CAT?

Reading 53 Expectancy Violations Theory (EVT)

1. Explain the key concepts of EVT: expectancies, expectancy violation, violation valence, communicator reward.

2. Why does a positive violation produce a more favorable outcome than confirming expectations?

Research Article (in Blackboard): When online meets offline: An expectancy violations theory perspective on modality switching

This study uses three theories:

1) Social information processing theory (SIP) which, in a nutshell, states that people can become as close (relationally) online as offline, given enough time. It also uses the concept of a hyperpersonal perspective which indicates that CMC relationship partners may become more intimate faster than FtF partners. (See Griffin text website for quick overview of this theory);

2) Uncertainty reduction (UCR) theory which, with 8 axioms and 28 theorems, says that, in general, the more uncertainty about a partner is reduced, the more liking will occur (more information on Griffin text website)

3) Expectancy Violation theory - which you just read :).

Read the article (feel free to skip the results sections :), be prepared to discuss:


1. Why do the researchers think that the longer two people interact via CMC, the less likely they are to feel their expectations are met when they meet in person; what is the explanatory process for the violation of expectations (consider SIP and UCR)?

3. What did they do to these their hypotheses? What were the results?

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2. Why do the researchers think that if two people interact for a short time via CMC, they are likely to have their expectations met when they meet FtF; what is the explanation process for th confirmation of expectations (consider SIP and UCR)?

4. What limitations might have affected their results or the generalizability of their findings?

Reading 54 Building and Sustaining Personal Relationships: A Cognitive Valence Explanation (CVT)

1. Give a couple of examples of immediacy behaviors.

2. What are the key ideas in CVT?

3. How does CVT differ from EVT?


1. What are the key similarities/overlaps in these five theories?

2. Do we need all five? If not, how would you combine, delete etc. to reduce the number of theories and still keep the important theoretical ideas?


Word Version :)

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