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Interactive Listening - Research Paper Example

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Interactive listening is a type of listening where the listeners react both verbally and non-verbally to what they are hearing from the speaker (Bell & Smith, 2010). It gives the listener an opportunity to…
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Interactive Listening
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What interactive listening means Listening can be categorized as either interactive or non-interactive. Interactive listening is a type of listening where the listeners react both verbally and non-verbally to what they are hearing from the speaker (Bell & Smith, 2010). It gives the listener an opportunity to monitor his understanding of the content spoken by the speaker. In case of any emerging confusion about the content spoken by the speaker, the listeners should not just stay with his confusion while the speaker continues to speak. Interactive listening is a listening style in which the listener controls the speed, repetition, and explanations of the speaker (Nation & Newton, 2008). This means that the listener should make sure that the speaker speaks at a speed that could not hinder his understanding. He should also ensure that the speaker uses understandable explanations and makes repetition when necessary.
Techniques for effective interactive listening
According to Stitt (2004), the three major techniques for effective interactive listening are paraphrasing, acknowledging emotions, and asking clarifying questions. Paraphrasing is trying to state the content spoken by the speaker in one’s own words. When the ideas spoken by the speaker are paraphrased, the listener tries to understand them in his own context. This would promote understanding and alertness of the listener. The interactive listening technique of acknowledging emotions involves use of actions like nodding by the listener to show whether he understands or not. This technique could be very appropriate especially to shy listeners who are unable to react verbally to ideas spoken by the speaker. The other interactive listening technique involves asking the speaker to clarify his ideas if you do not understand them. This technique gives the listener a chance to react verbally to what he is hearing, which can promote his understanding of the ideas spoken by the speaker.
What I learned about listening this week that I did not know before
This week, we have learned several ideas that can help promote a communication as well as enhancing communication abilities. Among the ideas, the one that I did not know before is the idea of accommodating cultural differences in a communication. As Samovar, Porter & McDaniel (2009, p. 353) state, “communication competence requires more than just opening the door for listener-speaker dialogue.” This is because communication takes place in culturally diverse settings. Individuals in such settings have several cultural differences that result to factors that could hinder communication. However, if the cultural differences are accommodated, then the factors are control and thus the communication becomes competent.
How information about effective listening will affect how I listen
The way I currently listen is more of non-interactive. This listening technique has failed me several times especially when listening to complex concepts. In most of the times, I find myself not understanding the concepts no matter how attentive I listen. The information I have gained about effective listening will enable me to achieve great improvement on my listening in future. One of the improvements that it will help me achieve is changing to more interactive listening. The information will also enable me to choose interactive listening techniques to use in my listening. This would help be to avoid inappropriate application of a listening technique that might affect my speaker or me negatively. By doing this it would make my listening more effective and thus enhance achievement of communication competence.
Bell, A. H., & Smith, D. M. (2010). Management Communication. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.
Nation, I. S. P., & Newton, J. (2009). Teaching ESL/EFL Listening and Speaking. New York, NY: Routledge.
Samovar, L. A., Porter, R. E., & McDaniel, E. R. (2009). Communication between Cultures. Boston, MA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.
Stitt, A. (2004). Mediation: A Practical Guide. London: Cavendish Publishing Ltd. Read More
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