Essentials and Forms of Communications

Essentials and Forms of Communications

We will discussing the Essentials and Forms of Communications in English Language. We will be looking at essentials of communications, forms of communications, advantages and disadvantages of written and oral communication and purpose of communication.

Essentials and Forms of Communications

Essentials of Communications

Essentials and Forms of Communications… From the above diagram’, we see that communication involves five units {the Encoder, the Code, the Decoder, the Channel and the Feedback). But before the communication can be made functional and effective, certain conditions are required. These required or necessary conditions can be referred to as the essentials of communication, and they include the following!

  1. Communication contexts or situations
  2. Language used in the communication

Communication Context or Situations

Communication contexts or situations refer to the totality of experience being communicated. It includes the subject or main purpose of the communication, the preferred language used and the environment, all of which make up the signal or code of communication. Before any meaningful communication can take place, both parties (the encoder and decoder) must share the situation. The language used by the encoder must be understood by the decoder and also the subject of the message must be family to the decoder.  If for instance, the situation is not fully shared by both the encoder and the decoder, there will be the possibility of a break in communication.

Language Used in the Communication

This refers to the choice of words and sentences as well as utterances made by the encoder in his/her communication with the decoder. Difficult lexical items and sentence structures should as much as possible be avoided by the encoder in order to avoid subjecting the decoder to unnecessary Mental speculation which  may cause frustration to the decoder in The communication process. The language should “be simple, appropriate and clear so as to facilitate, rather than communication. The decoder should “be able to easily interpret the codes or signals, otherwise there will be a breakdown in communication.

CHANNEL: This is the route through which a message travels from the source to the receiver. We have the mass media channel and the interpersonal channels. The mass media channel includes the radio and television and print media such as newspapers, magazines and books.

The interpersonal channels are the telephones, letters, messengers, meetings and so on. Through these routes the source can conveniently send a message to the receiver any time.

Forms of Communications 

Generally, communication can take place in two forms. These forms are the oral/spoken form and the written form. The former is referred to as speech communication and is done through the mouth. While the latter, the written form of communication is communication carried out on paper. It is the graphic representation of oral communication.


The basic unit in the written communication is called sentence while in oral or spoken communication, it is called utterance. In other words, sentence  and utterance are used to describe written and oral forms of communication respectively. What is written is sentence while utterance is what is said.

Written and Oral Communication Compared

These two forms of communication have characteristics that distinguish them. For instance, the written form of communication occurs only on paper, while the oral form of communication can take place in the following

  1. i) Verbal exchange (face-to-face)
  2. ii) Telephone conversation
  3. Musical rendition.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Written Communication

The advantages of written communication are as follows: 

  1. Written communication provides permanent records that cannot be denied at any time.
  2. It gives the receiver the opportunity to read the message as often as he wants. This will eventually enhance his correct understanding of the message received.
  3. It removes the necessity for personal contact except where it becomes imperative to do so.
  4. Written communication is more reliable than oral communication.
  5. Since more time is spent in thinking, planning and putting down one’s ideas on paper, written communication is likely to be more accurate and credible-than oral communication.
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The Disadvantages of Written Communication are:

  1. Feedback is delayed since a written message transcends time and space.
  2. Written communication is time-consuming and cannot be subjected to absolute secrecy.
  3. It is more costly in terms of money and materials.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Oral Communication

The advantages of Oral Communication are:

  1. It is fast and provides immediate feedback in most cases.
  2. Oral communication makes it possible for an encoder to convince his receiver on the spot.
  3. It permits the use of non-verbal action such as gestures, signs etc.
  4. Communication barriers that can cause breakdown in communication can fee immediately.
  5. It is easier to maintain secrecy in oral communication.

The Disadvantages of Oral Communication

  1. Oral communication cannot be preserved
  2. It is not reliable.
  3. Oral communication is difficult to control especially when communicators are many.
  4. Face-to-face meetings can consume time.

The Purpose of Communication

Human beings engage in communication activates to achieve certain foals. Among these goals include:

  1. To influence certain actions to take place.
  2. To enhance social relationship through interactions.
  3. To send or receive information.
  4. For self-expression.
  5. To store records.

These purposes of communication combine to enhance some cohesion in language communities. They also enable the human being to make corresponding adjustments, which enables us to achieve psychological and material development. Moreover, they also enable him to acquire new values and knowledge that enable him to develop a better and more fulfilling environment for collective existence.

Types of Communication

Communication can be grouped into three sub­headings which are as follows:

  1. Intra-personal Communication
  2. Inter-personal Communication
  3. Mass Communication

Intra-personal Communication

The word “intra” means “within”. This type of communication takes place within the individual in terms of monologue. In intra-personal communication, the person or individual involved plays the role of source and interpreter. This type of communication supersedes the others because we think first before we speak.

Inter-personal Communication

Communication can occur between two or more in either oral   or written communication. It may also involve large groups of people who engage in communication among themselves. Thus, the type of communication taking place among a group of persons is referred to as inter-personal communication. In other words, it is the type of communication where one person communicates with one or more people.

Mass Communication

This is an extended type of inter-personal communication which does not require face-to-face interaction like-inter-personal communication. In mass communication, information is transmitted with technical equipment from an institutional body to the audience. The audience of mass communication is unknown and not a determined group or set.

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