Learning Communication

  1. Semantics – Glossary – Definitions
  2. Syntactics – Grammar –
  3. Pragmatics – Learning Communication Social Rules
  4. Prosodic – Meta-Communication, Communication about Communication, Para-communication
  5. Idiosyncratic – Using all the above to create specific meaning for specific contexts


Semantics is the relationship between symbols and the things they refer to. Semantic rules are the agreed-upon definitions of words. These rules are specific to each language and to each group of symbols in the language.


The word “syntax” means the study of the rules for the formation of grammatical sentences in a language. Therefore, syntactic rules are those rules used in communication to describe how things are organized or ordered. The order of words is very important. Without rules to govern how sentences are structured there would be no communication. In other words, there would be no understanding because there would be no common, basic form for everyone to rely on.[4]


Pragmatic rules are those rules used in social communication. They depend on the context of the situation. Pragmatics may include using languages for different purposes, changing language so that everyone within a group understands, or following important social rules.  Pragmatics are important because they consider key cultural and social rules that govern relationships. Along with this, they also consider relationships already formed between people, as well as the type of language used in such situations.


The prosodic rules of communication tell what rhythm, volume, pitch, tempo, and stress is to be used during a conversation. It relates to the paralanguage of communication, which is the nonverbal component of verbal communication. By shaping these qualities, a speaker reflects his or her emotional state, and can add more meaning or feeling to a message. When a speaker is speaking at a slow pace, low pitch, and soft volume, he or she most likely is in a calm, relaxed state. By speaking at a fast pace, high volume and pitch, and with extreme stress on words, a speaker is probably expressing anger.


The idiosyncratic rules of communication tell what type of words and language are to be used when speaking with people. Different word choice is adjusted due to the relationships between the communicators, the context of the conversation, the content of the conversation, and the cultural differences between the communicators. Jargon is a specialized language between certain people or professionals, and it is one example of how different words and language are used between people. Doctors or lawyers use jargon relating to their professions when communicating with other professionals, but adjust their word choices when speaking with patients or clients so they do not confuse or create misunderstandings.


Putting it Together

Just as Science has the Scientific Method, Education has an Educational Method.

  • Scientific Method
    • Form an Hypothesis
    • Collect Data
    • Analyze Data
    • Present a Conclusion about the Hypothesis
  • Educational Method
    • Ask a question – The thing that is to be learned
    • Present Data – either historical or experimental
    • Identify the Facts present in the Data
    • Present conclusions about the original question (Confirming or not Confirming the original Conclusion)
    • Present the Resume of the Individual/Group drawing the conclusions



We live by making successful predications about the future. The better the information the better the predications we can make. So it behoves us to learn to use all the information presented to us. My unique background of growing up with the growth of transistors and working in and teaching Telecommunications for 40 Years, I understand our digital world really well.

I use a number of authors as the foundation of my thinking. I start with Shannon-Weaver, particularly their syntackic, sem
F. A. Hayek

I need help getting information. We can all use help getting information. And, by the way Information is a commodity like Gold and Silver. I can point to Wallis Annenberg. Annenberg made a lot of money on Racing Form and TV Guide and Seventeen Magazine.

My background of Religion, Electronics, and Teaching, gives me a unique view of information. I see both the technical and the spitural