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Nonverbal Experiment in Conversation

Read ch. 6 before you do this Nonverbal Experiment in Conversation-have fun!

Nonverbal Experiment for three

Gather two friends or family members to work with you. Tell them you are going to work with nonverbal communication and explain what it is and what is “looks like.” You write up a list of nonverbal cues and give it to the observer so they can make check marks or marks when you use a nonverbal cue (like raising your eyebrows-use the textbook to find cues to write down).

Set it up so that two of you are going to have a conversation first and the third person will observe your nonverbal communication (he or she can write down what you or the other person does nonverbally).

The two of you can begin a normal conversation at this point with the third person noting what your nonverbal communication is at this time.  Stop after 3 minutes.

Then ask the observer to note your nonverbal cues again but call out to you or the other person when you do anything nonverbal (this lets you know that you are doing the nonverbal behavior). For you and the other person in your conversation-try not to use any nonverbal cues as you continue your conversation. Continue your conversation without ANY nonverbal cues and have the observer time you and your conversation partner and call out when either of you uses any nonverbal cues. You can still use verbal communication but no nonverbal communication.

Do this for three minutes. If you want to fully share the experience you can rotate the roles so that each person has an opportunity to call out the nonverbal cues.

Write a short report (no longer than 1/2 to one page) on your experience and post it here. Read and respond to two other classmates. Answer these questions in your post:

Identify the specific nonverbal cues that you had to struggle to stop using. What function did these play (p.176 from the textbook) for you?

What did it feel like for you to talk without any nonverbal cues?

What did it feel like to listen without any nonverbal cues?

What impact did it have on any conversations (topic, depth, breadth of topics) that you were able to have to not use any nonverbal cues?

Adler, Rodman, and DuPre talk about the need for us to be aware of our “most notable nonverbal behaviors” (p 191). What are your most notable nonverbal behaviors?

What nonverbal cue was the hardest to give up for you during this conversation? The easiest?

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