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Paperback 480 pp.
110 photos; 19 tables; 22 figures, 8" x 10"



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Imprint: OUP Canada

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The Process of Interpersonal Communication, Canadian Edition, Fourth Edition

Ronald B. Adler, Lawrence B. Rosenfeld, Russell F. Proctor and Constance Winder

This market-leading text provides students with a solid foundation for effective interpersonal communication with an emphasis on Canadian cultures, values, and identities. By showing how to apply communication skills in a variety of situations and cultural settings, Interplay prepares students to become effective communicators in both their personal and professional lives.

Readership : First- and second-year introductory courses in interpersonal communications, interpersonal relations, and interpersonal skills.


  • "I find this to be a very good textbook, thorough and scholarly, generally appealing in its language without talking down to students."
    --Shannon Hartling, University of Waterloo

  • "I believe this is the most student-friendly textbook I have used. . . . I really appreciate the Canadian content and the relevant research references."
    --Coleen Brown, Douglas College

From the Publisher
Part One - Foundations of Interpersonal Communication
1. Interpersonal Process
Why We Communicate
Physical Needs
Identity Needs
Social Needs
Practical Needs
The Communication Process
A Model of Communication
Insights from the Communication Model
Communication Principles
Communication Misconceptions
Interpersonal Communication Defined
Quantitative and Qualitative Definitions
Personal and Impersonal Communication: A Matter of Balance
Interpersonal Communication and Technology
Characteristics of Computer Mediated-Communication
Interpersonal Communication and Cultural Diversity
Intercultural Communication
Interpersonal and Intercultural Communication
Comparison of Canadian and US Culture
Attitudes toward Violence
Tolerance of Diversity
Relative Status of Men and Women
Communication Competence
Communication Competence Defined and Described
Characteristics of Competent Communication
2. Communication and the Self
Communication and the Self-Concept
How the Self-Concept Develops
Self-Concept Development in Context
Characteristics of the Self-Concept
The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy and Communication
Changing Your Self-Concept
Presenting the Self
Public and Private Selves
Characteristics of Identity Management
Why Manage Impressions?
How Do We Manage Impressions?
Identity Management and Honesty
Disclosing the Self
Models of Self-Disclosure
Benefits and Risks of Self-Disclosure
Alternatives to Self-Disclosure
Silence and Secrecy
The Ethics of Evasion
Guidelines for Self-Disclosure
Is the Other Person Important to You?
Is the Risk of Disclosing Reasonable?
Is the Self-Disclosure Appropriate?
Is the Disclosure Reciprocated?
Will the Effect Be Constructive?
3. Perceiving Others
The Perception Process
Influences on Perception
Physiological Influences
Psychological Influences
Social Influences
Cultural Influences
Common Tendencies in Perception
We Judge Ourselves More Charitably than We Do Others
We Are Influenced by Our Expectations
We Are Influenced by the Obvious
We Cling to First Impressions
We Assume Others Are Like Us
Perceiving Others More Accurately
Perception Checking
Building Empathy
4. Emotions
What Are Emotions?
Physiological Changes
Cognitive Interpretations
Non-Verbal and Verbal Expression
Influences on Emotional Expression
Biological Sex and Gender
Social Conventions
Social Roles
Fear of Self-Disclosure
Emotional Contagion
Guidelines for Expressing Emotions
Recognize Your Feelings
Choose the Best Language
Share Multiple Feelings
Recognize the Difference between Feeling and Acting
Accept Responsibility for Your Feelings
Choose the Best Time and Place to Express Your Feelings
Managing Difficult Emotions
Facilitative and Debilitative Emotions
Thoughts as a Cause of Feelings
Irrational Thinking and Debilitative Emotions
Minimizing Debilitative Emotions
Part Two - Creating and Responding to Messages
5. Listening
The Nature of Listening
The Importance of Listening
Listening Defined
Reasons for Listening
The Challenge of Listening
Listening Is Not Easy
All Listeners Do Not Receive the Same Message
Types of Non-Listening
Components of Listening
Types of Listening Responses
Silent Listening
Which Style to Use?
6. Language
The Nature of Language
Language Is Symbolic
Language Is Governed by Rules
Language Is Subjective
Language Is Linked to Worldview
The Influence of Language
Naming and Identity
Credibility and Status
Affiliation, Attraction, and Interest
Sexism, Sexual Prejudice, and Racism
Uses (and Abuses) of Language
Precision and Vagueness
The Language of Responsibility
Disruptive Language
Culture and Language
High versus Low-Context Cultures
Verbal Communication Styles
Gender and Language
Reasons for Communicating and Amount of Talking
Conversational Style
Non-Sex Variables
7. Non-Verbal Communication
Non-Verbal Communication Defined
Characteristics of Non-Verbal Communication
All Behaviour Has Communicative Value
Non-verbal Communication Is Primarily Relational
Non-verbal Communication Is Ambiguous
Non-verbal Communication Is Influenced by Culture
Functions of Non-Verbal Communication
Complementing and Accenting
Deception and Non-Verbal Communication
Hiding Deceit
Detecting Deceit
Types of Non-Verbal Communication
Face and Eyes
Body Movement
Physical Attractiveness
Physical Environment
Part Three - Dimensions of Interpersonal Relationships
8. Dynamics of Interpersonal Relationships
Why We Form Relationships
Intimacy and Distance in Relationships
Dimensions of Intimacy and Distance
Influences on Intimacy and Distance
Communication and Relational Dynamics
A Developmental Model of Interpersonal Relationships
Dialectical Tensions in Relationships
Characteristics of Relationship Development
Communicating about Relationships
Content and Relational Messages
Expression of Relational Messages
Communication That Keeps Relationships Going
9. Communication Climate
What Is Communication Climate?
How Communication Climates Develop
Levels of Message Confirmation
Climate Patterns
Creating Positive Climates
Evaluation versus Description
Control versus Problem Orientation
Strategy versus Spontaneity
Neutrality versus Empathy
Superiority versus Equality
Certainty versus Provisionalism
Transforming Negative Climates
Seek More Information
Agree with the Critic
10. Managing Conflict
What Is Conflict?
Expressed Struggle
Perceived Incompatible Goals
Perceived Scarce Rewards
Functional and Dysfunctional Conflicts
Integration versus Polarization
Co-Operation versus Opposition
Confirmation versus Disconfirmation
Agreement versus Coercion
De-escalation versus Escalation
Focusing versus Drifting
Foresight versus Short-Sightedness
Positive versus Negative Results
Individual Conflict Styles
Indirect Communication
Passive Aggression
Direct Aggression
Which Style to Use?
Conflict in Relational Systems
Complementary, Symmetrical, and Parallel Styles
Conflict Rituals
Variables in Conflict Styles
Methods of Conflict Resolution
Steps for the Win-Win Approach
Part Four - Contexts of Interpersonal Communication
11. Communicating with Family
Types of Family Communication
Communication Between Spouses or Partners
Communication Between Parents and Children
Communication Between Siblings
Elements of Family Communication
Families as Communication Systems
Family Narratives
Models for Other Relationships
Communication Rules
Effective Communication in Families
Strive for Closeness while Respecting Boundaries
Strive for a Moderate Level of Adaptability
Encourage Confirming Messages
Deal Constructively with Family Conflict
12. Work, Group, and Team Communication
Communicating in Organizations
Formal Communication
Informal Communication
Relationships in Work Groups and Teams
Characteristics of Groups and Teams
Personal Skills in Work Groups and Teams
Group Cultures
Face-to-Face and Mediated Relationships
Leadership, Power, and Influence in Working Groups
Types of Leadership
Types of Power
Advancing Your Career

Instructor's Manual:
For each chapter:
- General Teaching Strategies - detailed information on classroom environment, the importance of exercises, use of small groups, and team learning
- Classroom activities
- Matching exercises
- 5-7 discussion questions on the content of each chapter
- 10-15 additional exercises for each chapter from
Communication Teacher (online journal)
- Unit wind-up exercises
- Study guide - a list of suggestions to give to students on what to study for each chapter
- Lecture suggestions
- Discussion questions
- YouTube resources
PowerPoint Slides:
- Key points, figures, and tables from text (15-20 slides per chapter)
Student Study Guide
Image Bank:
- All images, tables, charts, and figures from the text
Test Generator:
For each chapter:
- 50 multiple choice questions
- 50 true-or-false questions
- 15-20 short answer questions
- 3 mini-essay questions
- 10 match questions
Student Study Guide:
- Self-grading multiple choice quizzes
-- 10 new self-grading quiz questions for each chapter
- Chapter overviews
- Learning objectives
- Case study exercises - includes business, communication, and health care examples for each chapter
- 3-5 sample answers to select discussion questions per chapter
- RSS feeds related to topics covered in the text
- YouTube resources
E-Book (ISBN 9780199009633)

Constance (Connie) Winder has been a faculty member at George Brown College since 1990. She holds a Ph.D in applied psychology and human development from OISE/UT. She is the managing editor of the Ideas Journal, which focuses on emotional well-being in child care, and has authored the previous three Canadian editions of Interplay.

Communication in Everyday Life - Sherry Devereaux Ferguson and Jenepher Lennox Terrion
Understanding Human Communication - Ronald B. Adler, George Rodman and Alexandre Sevigny
Interpersonal Communication - Sarah Trenholm, Arthur Jensen and Helen Hambly
Inter-Act - Kathleen Verderber and Erina MacGeorge
Making Connections - Kathleen Galvin
Interpersonal Communication for Canadians - Jennifer MacLennan

Special Features

  • Canadian statistics, research, references, and examples make the content relevant to students in this country.
  • Cites over 1000 current sources, offering a thorough, balanced treatment of the study of interpersonal communication.
  • Research from Canada, the United States, Europe, Australia, Africa, and Asia prepare students for the communication challenges of today's globalized world.
  • Photos, cartoons, and first-person accounts reflect real-world situations and add a sense of fun, offering students a practical approach to interpersonal communication and insight into their own relationships.
  • Emphasizes the relational nature of communication - students will learn that communication is something we do with others, not to them.
  • Emphasizes strategies for effective intercultural communication by exploring issues of language and identity as they pertain to First Nations people and Francophones.
  • A stunning, full-colour design with a wealth of photos, figures, and tables throughout reflects the vibrancy and excitement of interpersonal communication today.
New to this Edition
  • New section on networking and interviewing combined with additional content on professional communication throughout prepares students to transition into professional roles.
  • Expanded content on technology and communication examines influence of technology on issues such as self-disclosure in public forums, relationships and intimacy on social media, and texting as a form of relationship management.
  • Reflects the latest research and theories in the field with more material on emotions, communication and the self, managing conflict, and more, offering students a thorough, up-to-date treatment of the field.
  • New discussions of key topics such as gender stereotypes and emotional expression; First Nations' conceptions of families; informal communication networks within businesses; and the development of self-concept.
  • Greater emphasis on diversity and cultural influences on communication by using extensive examples of Canadian research, increased content on intercultural communication, and coverage of patterns of communication across cultures.
  • 50 new images throughout the text.