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SPH 131 vocabulary for last exam

Small Group

A collection of three to twelve people that assemble for a specific purpose.

implied leader

A group member to whom other members defer because of her or his rank, expertise, or other quality.

emergent leader

A group member who emerges as a leader during the group's deliberations.

designated leader

A person who is elected or appointed as leader when the group is formed.

procedural needs

Routine 'housekeeping' actions necessary for the efficient conduct of business in a small group.

task needs

Substantive actions necessary to help a small group complete its assigned task.

maintenance needs

Communicative actions necessary to maintain interpersonal relations in a small group.

hidden agenda

A set of unstated individual goals that may conflict with the goals of the group as a whole.

oral report

A speech presenting the findings, conclusions, decisions, etc., of a small group.


A public presentation in which several people present prepared speeches on different aspects of the same topic.

panel discussion

A structured conversation on a given topic among several people in front of an audience.


Keeping the audience foremost in mind at every step of speech preparation and presentation.


A process in which speakers seek to create a bond with the audience by emphasizing common values, goals, and experiences.


The tendency of people to be concerned above all with their own values, beliefs, and well-being.

fixed-alternative questions

Questions that offer a fixed choice between two or more alternatives.


A fallacy that forces listeners to choose between two alternatives when more than two alternatives exist.


A fallacy which assumes that because something is popular, it is therefore good, correct, or desirable.

slippery slope

A fallacy which assumes that taking a first step will lead to subsequent steps that cannot be prevented.

denotative meaning

The literal or dictionary meaning of a word or phrase.

connotative meaning

The meaning suggested by the associations or emotions triggered by a word or phrase.

concrete words

Words that refer to tangible objects

abstract words

Words that refer to ideas or concepts.


An explicit comparison, introduced with the word 'like' or 'as,' between things that are essentially different yet have something in common.


An implicit comparison, not introduced with the word 'like' or 'as,' between two things that are essentially different yet have something in common.


The similar arrangement of a pair or series of related words, phrases, or sentences.


Reiteration of the same word or set of words at the beginning or end of successive clauses or sentences.


Repetition of the initial consonant sound of close or adjoining words.


The juxtaposition of contrasting ideas, usually in parallel structure.

generic "he"

The use of 'he' to refer to both women and men.


The accepted standard of sound and rhythm for words in a given language


The physical production of particular speech sounds.


A variety of a language distinguished by variations of accent, grammar, or vocabulary.


The study of body motions as a systematic mode of communication.

question and answer session



The vibration of sound waves on the eardrums and the firing of electrochemical impulses in the brain.


Paying close attention to, and making sense of, what we hear


The name used by Aristotle for what modern students of communication refer to as credibility.


The name used by Aristotle for the logical appeal of a speaker. The two major elements of logos are evidence and reasoning.


The name used by Aristotle for what modern students of communication refer to as emotional appeal.


Gratify or indulge

scale questions

Questions that require responses at fixed intervals along a scale of answers.

open-ended questions

Questions that allow respondents to answer however they want


A means of making someone to do or believe something; an argument.

question of fact

A question about the truth or falsity of an assertion.

question of value

A question about the worth, rightness, morality, and so forth of an idea or action.

question of policy

A question about whether a specific course of action should or should not be taken.

burden of proof

The obligation facing a persuasive speaker to prove that a change from current policy is necessary.


The audience's perception of whether a speaker is qualified to speak on a given topic.

reasoning from specific instances

Reasoning that moves from particular facts to a general conclusion

reasoning from principle

Reasoning that moves from a general principle to a specific conclusion.

causal reasoning

Reasoning that seeks to establish the relationship between causes and effects.

analogical reasoning

Reasoning in which a speaker compares two similar cases and infers that what is true for the first case is also true for the second.

red herring

A fallacy that introduces an irrelevant issue to divert attention from the subject under discussion.

ad hominem

A fallacy that attacks the person rather than dealing with the real issue in dispute.

appreciative listening

Listening for pleasure or enjoyment.

empathic listening

Listening to provide emotional support for a speaker.

comprehensive listening

Listening to understand the message of a speaker.

critical listening

Listening to evaluate a message for purposes of accepting or rejecting it.


dependence between two or more people,


The action or fact of forming a united whole.

primary tension

Experience of tension that individual group members feel during the early stages of group evolution or at the beginning of a meeting

secondary tension

Discomfort that a group experiences, or that is experienced by individual group members, beyond the tolerance threshold for tension.


The practice of thinking or making decisions as a group in a way that discourages creativity or individual responsibility

risky shift

Group polarization is the tendency of people to make decisions that are more extreme when they are in a group,

leaderless group

no leader.


Taking no account of other people's wishes or opinions; domineering


Favoring or characterized by social equality; egalitarian




Spoken or done without preparation


Done without being planned, organized, or rehearsed


Commit to memory; learn by hear

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