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4.6: Chapter Wrap-Up

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    In this chapter, we discussed the importance of verbal communication. To be an effective verbal communicator, it is necessary to understand that the words you use convey meanings that you might intentionally or unintentionally communicate to others. However, the meaning of language can vary from person to person.

    This chapter also discusses the various rules of language. Verbal communication serves many purposes and works to clarify the meaning of nonverbal communication. The type of language that you use can impact how others will see you.

    Finally, this chapter discusses the subcategories of verbal communication. The subcategories of verbal communication allow us to understand how misunderstandings might occur if language is not used effectively.

    End of Chapter

    Key Terms
    • Abstract
    • Abstraction Ladder
    • Affiliation
    • Ambiguous Language
    • Bias
    • Biased Language
    • Buzz Word
    • Cliché
    • Colloquialism
    • Connotation
    • Converge
    • Denotation
    • Discourse
    • Diverge
    • Euphemism
    • Formal Language
    • Heuristic Function
    • Idiom
    • Imaginative Function
    • Informal Language
    • Instrumental Function
    • Interactional Function
    • Jargon
    • Language
    • Language Adaptation
    • Language Awareness
    • Linguistic Determinism
    • Linguistic Relativity
    • Metamessage
    • Personal Function
    • Racism
    • Racist Language
    • Racist Language
    • Regulatory Function
    • Relative Language
    • Representational Function
    • Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis
    • Sexism
    • Sexist Language
    • Sexist Language
    • Slang
    • Spin
    • Static Evaluation
    • Vocabulary

    Real World Case Study

    Kory was an introverted and timid sixth-grader who moved to a new school. One day, he was searching on the Internet and he came across a negative website about him posted by some of his classmates. On the webpage, many of the students called him horrible names and made some damaging and hurtful remarks about his looks and sexuality. Every day, the words would get worse. The language became unbearable, and he went through a lot of torment because all of the statements about him were untrue. Kory had endured cyberbullying. He had considered suicide.

    Cyberbullying seems to be a growing problem these days. Think about the ways you

    1. What are some ways to help Kory?
    2. What should Kory do?
    3. How should he respond?

    End of Chapter Quiz

    1. The fact that the words “Come Here!” can have different interpretations based on the source of the message is related to:
      a. semantic
      b. verbal
      c. syntactic
      d. pragmatic
      e. discourse
    2. According to the abstraction ladder, which of the following statements is the most abstract?
      a. You are lazy!
      b. You need to tell me what I need to do
      to lose five pounds this month.
      c. You should workout.
      d. You need to eat healthier.
      e. That dress is too small on you and does not fit.
    3. Larry is madly in love with Sarah. You can tell this when he tells he brings her flowers or writes new songs to sing to her. Larry is using ____ to convey his feelings.
      a. abstraction
      b. connotation
      c. denotation
      d. discourse
      e. metamessages
    4. Saying “I love you” every time you see your grandmother is a _____ function.
      a. regulatory
      b. imaginative
      c. interactional
      d. personal
      e. ritual
    5. In this chapter, you learned all of the following except:
      a. how naming affects perceptions
      b. language can impact affiliations
      c. there are three different rules to understanding language
      d. language can be sexist or racist
      e. language can influence perceptions of credibility


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    2 Gamble, T. K., & Gamble, M. W. (2014). Interpersonal Communication: Building Connections Together. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

    3 Hayakawa, S. I. (1941). Language in thought and action. Harcourt, Brace, & Company.

    4 Watzlawick, P., Beavin, J. H., & Jackson, D. D. (1967). Pragmatics of human communication. New York: W. W. Norton.

    5 Ogden, C. K., & Richards, I. A. (1923). The Meaning of Meaning: A Study of the Influence of Language upon Thought and of the Science of Symbolism (Vol. 29). K. Paul, Trench, Trubner & Company, Limited.

    6 Halliday, M. A. K., & Webster, J. J. (Ed.). (2004). Language of early childhood. Continuum International Publishing.

    7 Deutscher, G. (2010). Through the language glass: Why the world looks different in other languages. Metropolitan Books.

    8 Kelly, L. (2019, February 8). Do Inuits really have 50 words for snow? Readable. blog/do-inuits-really-have-50-words-for-snow/

    9 Tohidian, I. (2009). Examining linguistic relativity hypothesis as one of the main views on the relationship between language and thought. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 38(1), 65-74. s10936-008-9083-1

    10 Whorf, B. L. (1956) An American Indian model of the universe. In J. B. Carroll (Ed.). Language, thought, and reality: Selected writings of Benjamin Lee Whorf (pp. 57-64). Technology Press of Massachusetts Institute of Technology. pp. 57–64; pg. 57.

    11 Whorf, B. L. (1956). The relation of habitual thought and behavior to language. In J. B. Carroll (Ed.). Language, thought, and reality: Selected writings of Benjamin Lee Whorf (pp. 134-159). MIT Press.

    12 Lieberson, S. (2000). A matter of taste: How names, fashions, and culture change. Yale University Press.

    13 Christensend, N., & Larsen, B. (2008). The name game. The Psychologist, 21, 210-213.

    14 Weingarten, G. (2003, September 21). Signs of a troubled society. The Washington Post. tinyurl. com/v629xnn

    15 Levitt, S. D., & Dubner, S. J. (2005). Freakonomics: A rogue economist explores the hidden side of everything. William Morrow.

    16 Ireland, M. E., Slatcher, R. B., Eastwick, P. W., Scissors, L. E., Finkel, E. J., & Pennebaker, J. W. (2011). Language style matching predicts relationship initiation and stability. Psychological Science, 22 (1), 39 - 44. https://

    17 Dunleavy, K. N., & Booth-Butterfield, M. (2009). Idiomatic communication in the stages of coming together and falling apart. Communication Quarterly, 57(4), 416-432.

    18 Parks, J. B., & Robertson, M. A. (2008). Generation gaps in attitudes toward sexist/nonsexist language. Journal of Language & Social Psychology, 27(3), 276-283.

    19 Smith- McLallen, A, Johnson, B. T., Dovidio, J. F., & Pearson, A. R. (2006). Black and white: The role of color bias and implicit race bias. Social Cognition, 24(1), 46–73.

    20 Harris, A. K. (1999). A revolutionary view of communication: Cheris Kramarae’s theory of muted groups. Women & Language, 22(2), 54-54.

    21 Kramarae, C. (2005). Muted group theory and communication: Asking dangerous questions. Women and language, 28(2), 55.

    22 Kofoed, J. (2008). Muted transitions. European Journal of Psychology of Education, 23(2), 199-212. https://

    23 Murray, N. (2012). Writing essays in English language and linguistics: Principles, tips and strategies for undergraduates. Cambridge University Press; p. 147

    24 Cutrara, J. (2017, September 11). 14 business jargon phrases people love to hate. Grammarly Blog. https://

    25 Trudgill, P. (2000). Sociolinguistics: An introduction to language and society. Penguin, pg. 17.

    26 Mattiello, E. (2008). An introduction to English slang: a description of its morphology, semantics and sociology. Polimetrica.

    27 Nunberg, G., Sag, I. A., & Wasow, T. (1994). Idioms. Language, 70(3), 491-538.

    28 Blake, G., & Bly, R. W. (1993). The elements of technical writing. Macmillan;, pg. 85.

    29 Ioannidou, E. (2009). Using the ‘improper’ language in the classroom: The conflict between language use and legitimate varieties in education. Evidence from a Greek Cypriot classroom. Language and Education, 23(3), 263-278.

    30 Poteat, V. P., & DiGiovanni, C. D. (2010). When biased language use is associated with bullying and dominance behavior: The moderating effect of prejudice. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 39(10), 1123-1133.

    31 Westlund Stewart, N., Wilson, A. W., & Drewery, D. W. (2020). Mindfulness exercises for written communication: Key issues in large classrooms. Innovations in Education and Teaching International, 57(1), 109-118.

    32 Khan, T. (2015). Improve your vocabulary: Enriching word power the fun way. V&S Publishers.

    33 Crystal, D. (2006). How language works: How babies babble, words change meaning, and languages live or die. Harry N. Abrams.

    34 G., R. L. (2013, May 29). Vocabulary size: Lexical facts. The Economist.

    35 Svalberg, A. M. (2007). Language awareness and language learning. Language Teaching, 40(4), 287-308.

    36 Rauschenbach, J. (1994). Checking for student understanding: Four techniques. Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance, 65(4), 60-63.

    End of Chapter Quiz Answer Key

    1. D
    2. A
    3. E
    4. E
    5. E


    4.6: Chapter Wrap-Up is shared under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Jason S. Wrench, Narissra M. Punyanunt-Carter & Katherine S. Thweatt (OpenSUNY) via source content that was edited to conform to the style and standards of the LibreTexts platform; a detailed edit history is available upon request.