The Shannon and Weaver Model

The Shannon and Weaver model of communication is probably the best known of all communication models. This video demonstrates the two reasons behind its popularity: (1) it identifies the most important components of any communication process, and (2) it diagrams how those components interact. What does this mean for you, and how you can become a more effective communicator? You can answer this question and appreciate Shannon and Weaver's model by considering any instance of communication between yourself and any other being capable of communication (including non-humans). Use the model to identify all of the elements you, as a communicator, need to respond to communicate effectively in that instance. For example, think about how you would tell a dog or cat that you approved of its behavior. Think specifically about how you would have to adjust each of the components in Shannon and Weaver's model to ensure that the dog or cat understood you. Next, think about how you would respond differently to those components if you needed to communicate the same kind of approval to a human being, perhaps a co-worker or trainee. Finally, consider a scenario in which you had to communicate disapproval to an already hostile individual. Which elements in the model would you have to modify? These questions illustrate how Shannon and Weaver's model increases your awareness of communication situations and enables you to "first seek to understand, then seek to be understood".

Source: Ann-Louise Davidson and Nadia Naffi
Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Last modified: Wednesday, November 17, 2021, 12:24 PM