Communication is something we all do every day – it is something that doesn’t seem to be complex or complicated enough to require its own academic discipline to be studied. Nevertheless, there is one, and it can show your communication from many angles you haven’t considered before – which is why writing a communications essay is always such a novel and challenging experience for students irrespectively of their academic level.
A good communications essay combines data from the fields of sociology, anthropology, ethics, performance studies and a number of other fields. To make matters more complicated, communications isn’t a homogenous field by itself – it can be further subdivided into rhetoric, business, interpersonal, media, organizational and other types of communications, each complete with its own set of principles, authorities and research methods.
Normally you should concentrate on a single field in your work, but keep in mind that none of them exists in complete isolation from the others.
The choice of topic for you to write about mostly depends on whether you are allowed some degree of freedom or your topic is assigned to you by your instructor. For the purpose of this guide, we presume that you are free to write about whatever you want – however, be aware that even when your choice of topics is limited, usually you can alter your assignment enough to make it more palatable. If you come to your instructor with intelligent questions and suggestions, he will usually agree to meet you halfway and make some alterations to the original topic.
As for the choice of topic as it is, here are some suggestions that can make this process easier:
Here are some good suggestions to give you perspective:
Sources are everything in academic writing. Even if you have a strong argument, perfectly researched topic, and sufficient statistics and data to back up your findings but cannot find existing academic papers, books and other sources to support your point, your essay is going to be rejected as not having enough evidence. Academic writing cannot exist in isolation – every academic paper is not a thing in itself but a continuation of a discourse, with everybody who researched this topic in the past being its other participants.
However, it is not enough to simply find a source and quote it. You have to pay attention to what you quote. Here are some suggestions you may find useful when looking for data sources for your communications essay:
Any communications essay should start with a proof of why you consider your topic to be worthy of research in general and why you believe your own findings concerning the subject matter important enough to write about them. The first few sentences constitute the hook – especially interesting facts or correlations of them to attract the reader’s attention.
Thesis statement is, simply said, the gist of your essay, its main idea boiled down to a single sentence (two at most). In it, you state the most important thought behind your entire text – what you want to prove, what you consider to be the most crucial part of your research. It is somewhat similar to the topic of your communications essay, but there is an important difference. The topic points out what your essay is about, e.g., ‘Communication between Representatives of Different Cultures as a Driving Force behind Cultural Development’. The thesis statement is a statement you make about this topic, e.g., ‘Communication between representatives of different cultures invariably leads to cultural diffusion and changes in both cultures taking part in the communication process’.
The most important characteristics of the thesis statement is that it should be short, to the point and focused on a single idea. If there is more than one idea to be gleaned out of it, you are likely doing things wrong and weren’t able to make it focused enough.
Communication essays have to be written in the formal style. Even if the contents of your essay are all right and deserve an excellent grade, you can seriously harm your prospects if you fail to meet the stylistic requirements. You may find full information in your style guide, but here are some of the most important things to consider:
The conclusion gives the reader a summary of everything the essay presented up to this point. Here you more or less repeat everything you said in the introduction and see if it all turned out the way you supposed it to do. Did your ideas turn out to be true? Did the findings in the course of research change your original point of view? Do you consider your topic to be a good prospect for further and additional research by other scientists? What avenues of research would you recommend? Why do you consider the results of your work important, what do they change in the field?
Here are some of the mistakes students are especially prone to as well as the communications essay tips on how to avoid them.
Communications isn’t an easy topic to write about; we hope that this communications essay guide will improve your chances of successfully completing your assignment.