Date of Award

1981

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to provide information that might lead to a more efficient way to teach business communication. By investigating the use of structured interpersonal communication, a decision might be made as to whether or not structured interpersonal communication should be stressed, and if so, how business-writing principles might be taught more efficiently. The problem was to determine what effect structured interpersonal communication has on student achievement of the principles of business writing in a business communication course. The study was conducted at the University of New Orleans, New Orleans, Louisiana and all students in the sample were College of Business Administration majors enrolled in four sections of Office Administration 2651, Business Communication, during the fall semester of the 1980-81 academic year. The experimental-control group, pretest-posttest design was chosen for this study. The experimental group consisted of fifty-eight students while the control group consisted of sixty-three students. In this experiment, the variable being investigated was structured interpersonal communication. Structured interpersonal communication in the experimental sections consisted of five structured interpersonal communication exercises. These exercises consisted of business communication problems selected from textbooks by the researcher. The problems involved a neutral message, a negative message, an informal report, an authorization letter, and a letter of transmittal. In the experimental sections, immediately after introducing the respective topics, the class was divided into groups of three. Each group was then given the same business communication problem dealing with the respective topic. Using structured interpersonal communication, each group had 35 minutes to write a composite solution to the problem. At the next class meeting, two of these composite solutions were distributed to the class. Through class discussion, the class critiqued the solutions. In the control sections, immediately after introducing the respective topics, two examples of solutions pertaining to these topics were distributed to the class. The class then critiqued these solutions through class discussion. Except for the structured interpersonal communication exercises in the experimental sections, the control sections were taught using the same methods and procedures. A Pretest was administered to all students the first week of the semester, and a posttest was administered to all students after the structured interpersonal communication exercises had been completed in the experimental sections. The instrument used in the pretest/posttest was constructed by the researcher and consisted of 75 multiple-choice items. The instrument was validated by a panel of experts and a field test established a reliability coefficient of .73 for the instrument. The results of the analysis of covariance, which was used to determine whether structured interpersonal communication increases student achievement of business-writing principles, were as follows: (1)There was a significant increase in student achievement of business-writing principles at the .05 level when pretest scores were used as the covariate. (2)There was a significant increase in student achievement of business-writing principles at the .05 level when student Grade Point Averages (GPA) were used as the covariate. Research results indicate that structured interpersonal communication is a significant factor in student achievement of business-writing principles.

Pages

73

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