4-5 pages typed (Essay format, 12 pt. font, Times New Roman, double spaced)
In Preparation Do some research to locate at least two articles that focus on attributes of competent communicators. These articles can speak about competence generically or in a specific context (i.e., parent-child, workplace, intimate, etc.). Make a list of at least 4 of the attributes that you
would like to discuss. At least one of the articles should come from a scholarly source. Highlight quotes that you might incorporate in your paper.

Using the questions on page 2, interview a person that you would like to focus on practicing your interpersonal communication skills with throughout the semester. If their answers are incomplete, it is your responsibility to probe and get more detail. This can be a great opportunity
to uncover things that you might not otherwise get to know. Be prepared though, as it can be an emotional encounter. Make sure you are open to hearing what the other person says.
Writing the Essay
1. In the introductory paragraph briefly describe the person and your relationship to them. It might also be helpful to disclose the reason you chose to focus on your communication with this person in particular. Please only share whatever information you are comfortable sharing. The
goal here is to give the reader some context for the forthcoming analysis. (The length of the relationship, the general personality of the participants, the nature of the relationship, etc.) This is not where the bulk of your information should be; it is merely stage setting.

2. In body paragraph 1, use the information they provide in “question 1” to address the following ideas: in this relationship,

  • What does the other person perceive are your communication strengths and your communication weaknesses?
  • Do you agree with their assessment?
  • Does anything surprise you? Do you have any idea how these strengths/weaknesses developed?
  • Please provide concrete personal examples to support your claims.
  • 3. In body paragraph 2, summarize what they shared about what they value, and how your communication behaviors make them feel about YOU and how your communication behaviors make you feel about THEMSELVES. Analyze their answers and share your impressions.
  • 4. Briefly describe each characteristic of competent communicators that you selected from your research.
  • Provide brief personal examples that illustrate your perceived level of competence in the given area. Where do you believe you are you strong? Where are you weak? For each characteristic, share the perceptions of the person that you interviewed. Did any of their answers surprise you?
  • 7. Write a concluding paragraph that address the question, “Now what?”
  • Now that you know what you know, what will you do with what you know? Spell check, grammar check, and read it out loud. Consider meeting with a consultant in the WRC if needed. Peer edit with a partner.
  • Make improvements as needed. If you have questions, ask ASAP. Submit on Canvas before the due date.
  • Enhancing My Communication Survey Communication competence is the ability to choose a communication behavior that is both appropriate and effective for a given situation. Interpersonal competency allows one to achieve their communication goals without causing the other party to lose face.
  • As an assignment in my Interpersonal Communication course this semester, I am focusing on improving my interpersonal communication competence. Your feedback with this process is sincerely appreciated. Please be honest in your appraisals, as flattery won’t be as helpful as constructive criticism.
  • 1. What do you see as my greatest strengths when I communicate with you? Can you provide any specific examples? What can I do when I communicate with you that could be improved? Can you provide specific examples of time when I did those things?
  • 2. In terms of the strengths you mentioned regarding my communication, why do you value those behaviors? How do they make you feel about our relationship? When I do what you mentioned what could be improved, how do those behaviors make you feel about ME? How do they make you feel about YOURSELF?
  • 3. How would you describe my competence in the following areas? Can you provide specific examples to support your assessment? (*List at least 4 characteristics of a competent communicator from the research you located).
  • 4: Can we practice together the skills that I learn in class? Are you open to discussing them throughout the semester?

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