Comm 300: Communication Theory Quiz 2

Quiz 2

Comm 300: Communication Theory

Fall 2014

PART I:  Multiple Choice (1 point each)

Directions:  Below are 30 multiple choice questions.  Please indicate the best answer from the selections given.

Symbolic Interaction Theory

  1. Symbolic interaction theory argues that meaning
    1. can only exist when people share common interpretations of the symbols they exchange in an interaction
    2. occurs between people
    3. is affected by society
    4. all of the above
    5. none of the above
  1. According to Mead, one of the most critical activities people accomplish through thought is
    1. projection
    2. role taking
    3. the Pygmalion effect
    4. the concept of mind
  1. The looking-glass self is best defined as
    1. the mental image others have of us
    2. the mental image we have of ourselves
    3. the mental image we have of how others see us
    4. the mental image of the physical attributes we observe
  1. True or False?  One of Mead’s ontological assumptions is that human communication is social.
    1. true
    2. false

Coordinated Management of Meaning

  1. Coordinated management of meaning
    1. refers to how individuals establish rules for creating and interpreting meaning
    2. refers to how rules are used in a conversation
    3. assumes that humans co‑create reality
    4. all of the above
  1. Which of the following is a speech act?
    1. a compliment
    2. an insult
    3. a sarcastic remark
    4. all of the above
  1. Deanna and her son Aidan are talking about manners.  Deanna tells Aidan, “Cover your mouth when you sneeze.”  This is an example of which type of rule?
    1. constitutive
    2. unwarranted
    3. regulative
    4. patterned
  1. True or False?  CMM is an example of a Laws Approach to theory building.
    1. true
    2. false

Cognitive Dissonance Theory

  1. Cognitive dissonance can be defined as
    1. the feeling people have when they do things that don’t fit with what they believe
    2. the feeling people have when some of their opinions do not fit with other opinions they hold
    3. the feeling people have when their actions are congruent with what they know
    4. both a and b
    5. none of the above
  1. You believe that smoking is dangerous to your health; and yet, you smoke a pack of cigarettes a day.  When this inconsistency is pointed out to you, you are likely to experience
    1. dissonance
    2. consonance
    3. irrelevance
    4. noneof the above
  1. When confronted with the fact that you smoke even though you think it is bad for you, you rationalize that it’s okay for you to smoke because you are under a tremendous amount of stress in college and smoking helps to calm your nerves.  This rationalization process is likely to
    1. increase your dissonance
    2. anger your Comm 300 professor
    3. restore consonance
    4. all of the above
    5. none of the above
  1. According to class lecture, the three factors that influence the magnitude of dissonance a person will feel are
    1. the amount of inconsistency, the number of dissonant cognitions, and the number of consonant cognitions
    2. the amount of inconsistency, the dissonance ratio, and the dissonance propensity
    3. the relative importance of your cognitions, the number of dissonant cognitions, and the number of consonant cognitions
    4. none of the above

Uncertainty Reduction Theory

  1. According to URT, the two primary goals of individuals engaged in an initial interaction are _________________ and __________________.
    1. understanding, disclosure
    2. prediction, explanation
    3. disclosure, explanation
    4. prediction, control
  1. In the ____________ phase of interpersonal communication, self‑disclosure increases as parties begin to reduce their uncertainty about one another.
    1. entry
    2. primary
    3. personal
    4. exit
  1. Jake is attracted to Felicia, but he’s not sure about her current relationship status. He decides to ask one of her friends if Felicia is currently seeing anyone. Which type of tactic has Jake employed to reduce his uncertainty about Felicia?
    1. passive
    2. active
    3. interactive
    4. co‑active
  1. Below are two of the seven original Axioms of URT.

Axiom 1:  There is a negative relationship between Uncertainty and Verbal Communication

Axiom 5:  There is a positive relationship between Uncertainty and Reciprocity

What is the resulting Theorem by combining these two Axioms?

    1. there is a positive relationship between verbal communication and reciprocity
    2. there is a negative relationship between verbal communication and reciprocity
    3. there is no relationship between verbal communication and reciprocity
    4. there is a curvi-linear relationship between verbal communication and reciprocity

Social Exchange Theory

  1. Relationships in which costs exceed rewards are perceived as being
    1. interdependent
    2. negative
    3. supportive
    4. positive
  1. We are likely to stay in relationships when our satisfaction is __________ and our comparison level for alternatives is __________.

a.        low, high

b.       low, low

c.        all of the above

d.       none of the above

  1. We are likely to leave a relationship when our satisfaction is __________ and our comparison level for alternatives is __________.

a.        low, high

b.       low, low

c.        all of the above

d.       none of the above

  1. True or False? One of Thibaut and Kelley’s epistemological assumptions is that knowledge is certain.
    1. true
    2. false

Social Penetration Theory

  1. All of the following statements about self‑disclosure are true EXCEPT
    1. nonintimate relationships typically progress to an intimate level without engaging in self‑disclosure
    2. self‑disclosure can be strategic, which means that disclosures are planned
    3. self‑disclosure can be nonstrategic, which means that disclosures are spontaneous
    4. stranger‑on‑the‑train refers to instances in which people reveal information in public places to complete strangers
  1. When we meet someone for the first time (i.e., our initial encounter), the breadth of our self disclosure is ___________ and the depth of our self disclosure is __________.
    1. high, low 
    2. high, high
    3. low, high
    4. low, low
  1. Julianne and Ricardo have reached the point in their relationship at which they openly express their thoughts and feelings with one another. Their communication is viewed as being efficient. Which stage of social penetration describes the current state of their relationship?
    1. orientation
    2. exploratory affective
    3. affective exchange
    4. stable exchange

Relational Dialectics Theory

  1. All of the following statements are true about dialectical tensions EXCEPT
    1. people are not always able to resolve the contradictions they experience and may become comfortable believing inconsistent things about relationships
    2. partners in a relationship experience ongoing tensions between contradictory impulses
    3. dialectical theorists support the idea that there is typically one point of view that should dominate a relationship
    4. Baxter and Montgomery are the researchers associated with Relational Dialectics Theory
  1. Kip has been dating Theresa for less than a month.  During a recent date, he discovered that he was uncomfortable because he had revealed a lot of information about his dysfunctional childhood to Theresa but had not told her about the time he was arrested for driving under the influence.  Which dialectical tension is Kip experiencing?
    1. autonomy and connection
    2. openness and protection
    3. novelty and predictability
    4. real and ideal
  1. Praxis is the dialectic element which lets us know which of Baxter and Montgomery’s ontological assumptions?
    1. knowledge is certain
    2. communication is an individual endeavor
    3. communication is a matter of choice
    4. knowledge is uncertain

Aristotle’s Rhetoric

  1. One of the assumptions of Aristotle’s Rhetoric is that effective speakers must consider their audiences when constructing a speech.  This assumption underscores the notion of communication as
    1. symbolic meaning making
    2. linear
    3. confusing
    4. transactional
  1. An argument consists of a claim that garners support from _________________ and is explained with the use of __________________.

a.        reasoning, evidence

b.       reasoning, rhetoric

c.        rhetoric, evidence

d.       evidence, reasoning

  1. While running for president of the United States, Barack Obama gave many speeches advocating health care reform in the United States. These speeches were a form of _________ oratory.

a.        epideictic

b.       forensic

c.        ceremonial

d.       deliberative

  1. Drunk driving can kill people. College students can kill others if they drink and drive.” is an example of a syllogism.
    1. true
    2. false

Please Continue to next page for Part 2 of Quiz…

PART II:  Pentadic Analysis of Edward Kennedy’s “Chappaquiddick Speech” (10 points total)

Directions:  Below is the text of the late Senator Edward Kennedy’s famous “Chappaquiddick Speech”.  The Speech was broadcast nationally on July 25, 1969.  For those of you not familiar with the incident, Edward (Ted) Kennedy was accused of leaving the scene of an accident where a young woman, Mary Jo Kopechne, died by drowning after a car driven by Kennedy overturned into a deep pond on Chappaquiddick Island (off Martha’s Vineyard).  This is the speech where he explains what happened to the people of Massachusetts. 

Please read the speech and analyze it using Burke’s Pentad (Chapter 19:  Dramatism).  You may also listen to the speech at

NOTE:  If you choose to listen to the speech, please note that the broadcast is incomplete.   You will have to read the first couple of paragraphs before you can hear him speaking.  Likewise, you will have to read the last couple of paragraphs, after the sound ends.  Alternately, you can search for the speech on YouTube.  You can usually find it there as well.

Specifically, please answer the following questions regarding Ted Kennedy’s Speech.

1.       What is the act? 

2.       What is the scene? 

3.       Who is the agent? 

4.       What is the agency? 

5.       What is the purpose? (i.e., What is the purpose of the Act?  Remember this is different than why Kennedy gave the speech)?

6.       Which element of the pentad stands out the most in this speech?  How does focusing on this element assist in understanding the strategies employed by the speaker? 

Edward (Ted) Kennedy:  Chappaquiddick Speech

(Broadcast Nationally from Joseph P. Kennedy’s Home on July 25, 1969)

My fellow citizens:

I have requested this opportunity to talk to the people of Massachusetts about the tragedy which happened last Friday evening. This morning I entered a plea of guilty to the charge of leaving the scene of an accident. Prior to my appearance in court it would have been improper for me to comment on these matters. But tonight I am free to tell you what happened and to say what it means to me.

On the weekend of July 18th, I was on Martha’s Vineyard Island participating with my nephew, Joe Kennedy — as for thirty years my family has participated — in the annual Edgartown Sailing Regatta. Only reasons of health prevented my wife from accompanying me.

On Chappaquiddick Island, off Martha’s Vineyard, I attended, on Friday evening, July 18th, a cook-out I had encouraged and helped sponsor for a devoted group of Kennedy campaign secretaries. When I left the party, around 11:15pm, I was accompanied by one of these girls, Miss Mary Jo Kopechne. Mary Jo was one of the most devoted members of the staff of Senator Robert Kennedy. She worked for him for four years and was broken up over his death. For this reason, and because she was such a gentle, kind, and idealistic person, all of us tried to help her feel that she still had a home with the Kennedy family.

There is no truth, no truth whatever, to the widely circulated suspicions of immoral conduct that have been leveled at my behavior and hers regarding that evening. There has never been a private relationship between us of any kind. I know of nothing in Mary Jo’s conduct on that or any other occasion — and the same is true of the other girls at that party — that would lend any substance to such ugly speculation about their character. Nor was I driving under the influence of liquor.

Little over one mile away, the car that I was driving on an unlit road went off a narrow bridge which had no guard rails and was built on a left angle to the road. The car overturned in a deep pond and immediately filled with water. I remember thinking as the cold water rushed in around my head that I was for certain drowning. Then water entered my lungs and I actual felt the sensation of drowning. But somehow I struggled to the surface alive.

I made immediate and repeated efforts to save Mary Jo by diving into the strong and murky current, but succeeded only in increasing my state of utter exhaustion and alarm. My conduct and conversations during the next several hours, to the extent that I can remember them, make no sense to me at all.

Although my doctors informed me that I suffered a cerebral concussion, as well as shock, I do not seek to escape responsibility for my actions by placing the blame either on the physical and emotional trauma brought on by the accident, or on anyone else.

I regard as indefensible the fact that I did not report the accident to the police immediately.

Instead of looking directly for a telephone after lying exhausted in the grass for an undetermined time, I walked back to the cottage where the party was being held and requested the help of two friends, my cousin, Joseph Gargan and Phil Markham, and directed them to return immediately to the scene with me — this was sometime after midnight — in order to undertake a new effort to dive down and locate Miss Kopechne. Their strenuous efforts, undertaken at some risk to their own lives, also proved futile.

All kinds of scrambled thoughts — all of them confused, some of them irrational, many of them which I cannot recall, and some of which I would not have seriously entertained under normal circumstances — went through my mind during this period. They were reflected in the various inexplicable, inconsistent, and inconclusive things I said and did, including such questions as whether the girl might still be alive somewhere out of that immediate area, whether some awful curse did actually hang over all the Kennedys, whether there was some justifiable reason for me to doubt what had happened and to delay my report, whether somehow the awful weight of this incredible incident might in some way pass from my shoulders. I was overcome, I’m frank to say, by a jumble of emotions: grief, fear, doubt, exhaustion, panic, confusion, and shock.

Instructing Gargan and Markham not to alarm Mary Jo’s friends that night, I had them take me to the ferry crossing. The ferry having shut down for the night, I suddenly jumped into the water and impulsively swam across, nearly drowning once again in the effort, and returned to my hotel about 2:00am — and collapsed in my room. I remember going out at one point and saying something to the room clerk.

In the morning, with my mind somewhat more lucid, I made an effort to call a family legal advisor, Burke Marshall, from a public telephone on the Chappaquiddick side of the ferry and then belatedly reported the accident to the Martha[‘s] Vineyard police.

Today, as I mentioned, I felt morally obligated to plead guilty to the charge of leaving the scene of an accident. No words on my part can possibly express the terrible pain and suffering I feel over this tragic incident. This last week has been an agonizing one for me and for the members of my family. And the grief we feel over the loss of a wonderful friend will remain with us the rest of our lives.

These events, the publicity, innuendo, and whispers which have surrounded them and my admission of guilt this morning raises the question in my mind of whether my standing among the people of my State has been so impaired that I should resign my seat in the United States Senate. If at any time the citizens of Massachusetts should lack confidence in their Senator’s character, or his ability — with or without justification — he could not in my opinion adequately perform his duties and should not continue in office.

The people of this State, the State which sent John Quincy Adams, and Daniel Webster, and Charles Sumner, and Henry Cabot Lodge, and John Kennedy to the United States Senate are entitled to representation in that body by men who inspire their utmost confidence. For this reason, I would understand full well why some might think it right for me to resign. For me, this will be a difficult decision to make.

It has been seven years since my first election to the Senate. You and I share many memories — some of them have been glorious, some have been very sad. The opportunity to work with you and serve Massachusetts has made my life worthwhile.

And so I ask you tonight, the people of Massachusetts, to think this through with me. In facing this decision, I seek your advice and opinion. In making it, I seek your prayers — for this is a decision that I will have finally to make on my own.

It has been written:

A man does what he must — in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles, and dangers, and pressures — and that is the basis of all human morality.1

…whatever may be the sacrifices he faces, if he follows his conscience — the loss of his friends, his fortune, his contentment, even the esteem of his fellow man — each man must decide for himself the course he will follow. The stories of the past courage cannot supply courage itself. For this, each man must look into his own soul.2

I pray that I can have the courage to make the right decision. Whatever is decided, whatever the future holds for me, I hope that I shall have — be able to put this most recent tragedy behind me and make some further contribution to our state and mankind — whether it be in public or private life.

Thank you and good night.

1 Winston Churchill, source uncertain and pending confirmation; quotation also ascribed to John F. Kennedy (see below)

2 John F. Kennedy, Profiles in Courage

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