No matter what type of relationship we are in—whether in terms of friendship, romance, or family members, all relationships are in the process of either developing or dying. This paper requires you to analyze an interpersonal relationship using communication concepts/theories and principles from the text.
The purpose of this assignment is to familiarize students with all of the course objectives. You are to analyze interpersonal communication principles and concepts in the development, maintenance, and possibly, the deterioration of a long term significant relationship. The relationship you choose to write about can be one that you are currently engaged in, or one that has already ended. It should, however, be a fairly recent one, not a relationship you had in grade school. It can be a friendship relationship or a romantic relationship. You don’t need to disclose any information you are not comfortable with disclosing.
This paper involves more than just simply summarizing the development of a relationship. While you will want to offer some description of the relationship; the main emphasis should be on how it has developed in communication between two people. You should organize your paper into the following three parts:
Introduction: Describe the relationship. Who are the participants? What is the history of the relationship? What is the current status of the relationship? This information should be relatively brief. Next, preview the body of the paper by indicating the terms/concepts you will use to analyze the relationship.
Body: In this section of the paper you will analyze the relationship using interpersonal communication concepts, terms, topics, etc. This is by far the longest section of the paper.
First organize the body of the paper around the stages of friendship or romantic relationship development (see your textbook). These stages can provide an excellent outline for the paper. The key here is to talk about how the stages are created in COMMUNICATION. How did communication change to move the relationship to another stage, and how did communication define a certain stage?
Select at least three concepts and apply them to your relationship. You may discuss these concepts and how they affected the communication in your relationship as you take us through the stages, or you may want to discuss them apart from the stages in terms of how they have played out in your relationship.
Some concepts you should consider using are: nonverbal communication, verbal communication, relational messages, conflicting perceptions, listening, self-fulfilling prophecies, social roles, gender communication, influence of culture, self-concept, self-esteem, self-disclosure, relational dialectics, confirming/disconfirming messages, interpersonal attraction, expressing emotions, trust, rituals, commitment, investment, managing conflict.
Conclusion: This section includes a brief summary of the body of the paper. End the paper with some reflections on your relationship, and what you learned as a result of writing this paper.
Papers will be based on 3 criteria. First, papers must demonstrate an understanding of interpersonal communication topics. Second, papers must analyze how these interpersonal communication topics apply to your particular relationship. Third, papers must be well organized and demonstrate effective writing mechanics and style.
You GOT THIS! Have fun!