Communication Theory Application Paper

Required textbook and source: Griffin, E., Ledbetter, A., & Sparks, G. (2019). A first look at communication theory.
New York, NY: McGraw Hill.

You will apply one theory from the list below to a real life situation of your own experiences or a current event (nothing fictional). This paper will describe the situation/current event, the theory, and apply the theory to the situation/current event. To apply a theory, use concepts from the theory to explain what happened. The theories for this module are listed below.


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For example, I could explain how I met a new friend whom I really like, then explain Knapp’s Stages of Coming Together and Apart, and use the stages of this model to explain where my friend and I are in our relational development. I can talk about how the first stage (initiation) is when we first met and got along very well. Then I can talk about how we have moved into the second stage (experimentation) that includes us going to lunch to see if we would like to continue becoming friends. (NOTE: Knapp’s is not one of the theories we will learn about in this class so do not look for it in our book. You may recognize it from the Interpersonal Communication course).

* Please choose a situation that could be relative to a 20-year-old college female *


The paper should be 3-4 pages in length. Check the “Guidelines for Papers” under the “Syllabus” tab for more writing/organizing information (e.g., spacing, font). Pay particular attention to the “layout” section of the “Guidelines for Papers”. This paper should include the following:

A description of the real situation or current event (1-2 paragraphs).
A description of the theory you choose (1-2 paragraphs).
Apply the theory to the situation/current event (1-3 paragraphs).
Choose ONE of these theories:
Chapter 7: Expectancy Violations Theory
Chapter 9: Uncertainty Reduction Theory
Chapter 12: Communication Privacy Management Theory
Chapter 16: Cognitive Dissonance Theory

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