You will need to build an original argument (sometimes called a “theory” or “plausible explanation”) about how a communication phenomenon can be better understood.
The word phenomenon can refer to a particular communication event, text, act, or conversation.
This would require you to discuss and analyze group dynamics and effectiveness in the work environment.
A rhetorical analysis could involve comparing and contrasting references to friendship in the speeches of two well-known figures.
In deciding the scope of your topic, look again at the purpose of the course and the aim of the assignment.
Check with your instructor to gauge the appropriateness of your topic before you go too far in the writing process.These illustrations are only examples, but you can use them as springboards to help you identify how your course might approach discussing a broad topic.An interpersonal communication perspective could focus on the verbal and nonverbal differences and similarities between how women communicate with other women and how men communicate with other men.You can make your argument more persuasive by knowing what is at stake, including both objective research and personal knowledge in what you write.Your argument should be supported with evidence, which may include, but is not limited to, related studies or articles, films or television programs, interview materials, statistics, and critical analysis of your own making.If you’d like to learn more about deciphering writing assignments or developing your academic writing, see our Writing Center handouts on these topics.For now, let’s see how a general topic, same-sex friendships, might be treated in each of the different areas.Assume that your audience for your paper includes your classmates as well as your instructor, unless otherwise indicated in the assignment.Your topic might be as specific as the effects of a single word in conversation (such as how the use of the word “well” creates tentativeness in dialogue) or as broad as how the notion of individuality affects our relationships in public and private spheres of human activity.An analysis of the play Waiting for Godot could unpack the lifelong friendship between the two main characters by identifying what binds the men together, how these ties are effectively or ineffectively conveyed to the audience, and what the play teaches us about same-sex friendships in our own lives.Finally, a media and film studies analysis might explain the evolution of a same-sex friendship by examining a cinematic text.