Communication Elements: 9 Elements of Basic Communication Process

Communication Elements: The Nine Elements or Components of the Basic Communication Process; for example, Context, Sender, Encoder,  Message, Channel, Decoder, Receiver,  Feedback, and Barriers or Noise. Additionally, an Example of 9 Elements of Communication.

Communication Elements

What are elements of communication?

Elements of communication are essential tools of communication on which the communication process is grounded. Communication elements initiate and conduct the full process of sharing information between the sender and receiver. These 9  elements of communication (Context, Sender, Encoder,  Message, Channel, Decoder, Receiver,  Feedback, and Noise) are fundamental tools to conduct a basic communication process.

Communication Process

What is the process of communication?

The communication process means the way of sharing information verbally or non-verbally between the sender and receiver.  Verbal communication means communication through spoken words. Nonverbal communication refers to nonverbal cues such as tone of voice, facial expression, movement, eye contact, body language, etc. Communication is the process of conveying the message via written text, speech, signals, visuals, or behavior. It also a process of exchanging opinions and imparting knowledge between speaker and audience through elements of communication.

Three Types of the Communication Model

There are three types of communication process including the Linear process of communication, the interactive process of communication, also the transitional way of communication. The linear communication process is a one-way interaction where feedback is not present. Various linear communication models have been established by many scholars, for example, Aristotle’s Model of Communication, Shannon-Weaver Model of Communication, Lasswell’s Model of Communication, Berlo’s SMCR Model of Communication, and so more. In contrast, the interactive and transitional way of communication seems like a two-way process of communication with feedback. Some famous transitional communication models are Barnlund’s Transactional Model of Communication, Dance’s Helical Model of Communication, Osgood-Schramm Model of Communication, and Westley and Maclean’s Model of Communication.

The 9 Elements of Communication Process

What are the 9 Elements of Communication?

The author is going to discuss the nine basic components of the communication process. The 9 elements of the basic communication process are Context, Sender, Encoder,  Message, Channel, Decoder, Receiver,  Feedback, and Noise.

Elements of Communication
Figure 1: The 9 Elements of the Basic Communication Process
Example of 9 Elements of Communication

Ela was talking to her husband on a smartphone and she requested her husband to deposit $100 for the electricity bill. At the same time, her son was watching a cartoon video on Television with the volume on high. Therefore, her husband could not understand exactly how much needs to pay for the electricity bill. So, she repeated the same words to confirm him. Consequently, her husband asked about the due date of paying the electricity bill, and she replied that today is the last date to pay the electricity bill without penalty. In the meantime, she showed her angry face to her son to reduce TV volume. Instantly, her son reduced the volume.

Based on the example, the context is social context, Ela is the sender and encoder at the same time receiver and decoder. In similar, her husband is also a sender and encoder at the same time receiver and decoder. Turning the thought into the message is the act of encoding. In contrast, transferring the message into thought is the process of decoding.

1. Communication Elements- Context

Firstly, context is the prime component of every communication process. Context represents the setting in which communication happens or takes place. This context may be physical, historical, psychological, social, chronological, or cultural. For example, you feel comfortable sharing your personal information with close friends rather than colleagues. This is an example of a social context that influences communication. Sender will

For example, Ela is talking to her husband informally, so she feels very comfortable. Therefore, the social-context has been designed from this interaction. The context would be physical-context if they interact face to face.

2. Communication Elements- Sender

The sender/encoder is a person who sends the message to the receiver. The sender is the initiator of the communication process who starts the procedure via sending a message or information. A sender makes use of symbols (words or graphic or visual aids) to convey the message and produce the required response. A sender is a speaker or writer or a person who convey the information with the intention of sharing opinion, ideas, and message.

For example. Ela is the sender and encoder who wants to convey information regarding the electricity bill payment.

3. Communication Elements-Encoding

Encoding is the process of transforming abstract opinions and ideas into symbols such as words, pictures, signs, and marks. A symbol might represent or indicate opinions, ideas, and actions. In contrast, decoding is the process of transforming the symbol into opinion or thought. Literally,  encoding is the process of transformation of the subject into symbols. The process of encoding is connected to the sender and receiver. The message of any communication is always abstract and intangible. Transmission of the message requires the use of certain symbols.

For example, Ela has transformed his thought into words to convey to her husband. Here, words are serving as the spoken communication symbol. She called her husband and uttered some words to share an opinion as well as send the message.

4. Communication Elements- Message

The message seems like a key element of any communication process. Any communication might happen to convey the message that is also known as the process of sharing ideas, opinions, thoughts, and information. Always, the sender wants to convey the message to communicate with the receiver. So, senders need to ensure that the main objective of the message is clear and understandable. Messages may convey through verbal and nonverbal cues. Verbal cues are the spoken language of the speaker, for instance, spoken words. On the other hand, nonverbal cues are facial expression, eye contact, physical appearance, posture, gesture, etc.

For example, Ela was speaking to convey the message that indicates verbal communication.  She also showed her angry face to her son to reduce the volume of TV that is called non-verbal communication.

5. Communication Elements- Channel

Channel is the way of transmitting the message. It is also known as a medium that conveys the message from sender to receiver. In the face to face communication, the sender’s senses including hearing, seeing, smelling, touching, and tasting are the channel of transmitting the information. On the other hand, organizations use Television, Newspapers, Radio as a channel to disseminate information. People use the computer and mobile phone to communicate with a person who lives far away from the sender. For instance, a small group of people chooses a written medium to convey the message, while people choose an oral medium when spontaneous feedback is required from the recipient as misunderstandings are cleared then and there.

For example, Ela has transmitted the message through a smartphone so it is the channel of conveying information.

6. Communication Elements- Decoding

Decoding is the process of translation of an encoded symbol into the ordinary understandable language in contrast to the encoder. In this process, the receiver converts the symbols into thoughts received from the sender.  Decoding is the opposite process of encoding to get the meaning of the message.

For example, Ela has transformed his thought into words to convey to her husband that is called encoding whereas, her husband convert those words into message or thought.

7. Communication Elements-Receiver

A receiver or decoder is a person for whom the message is targeted in contrast to the sender. The sender surely sends a message aimed at the receiver. Receivers can be one person or a group of people or a big amount of population. The degree to which the decoder understands the message is dependent upon various factors such as knowledge of the recipient, their responsiveness to the message, and the reliance of the encoder on the decoder.

For example, Ela has sent the message targeted at her husband to whom she wants to communicate. Hence, her husband is the receiver in this context of the communication.

8. Communication Elements-Feedback

Feedback is the main component of the effective communication process as it allows the sender to analyze the efficacy of the message. It also helps the sender in confirming the correct interpretation of the message by the decoder. Feedback may be verbal (through words) or non-verbal (in the form of smiles, sighs, etc.).  It may take written form also in the form of memos, reports, etc.

Feedback differentiates the linear and transitional model of communication. The model of communication is linear if the author does not add feedback to the model, for example, Lasswell’s Model of Communication. On the other hand, the communication model will be identified as interactive and transitional if the feedback is presented, for example, the Osgood-Schramm Model of Communication.

For example, Ela’s husband asked about the due date of paying the electricity bill.

9. Communication Element-Noise

Finally, Noise is a communication barrier or distraction. Noise is any type of barrier that hinders the effectiveness of the communication process. Communication barriers or communication noises exist in all types of the communication process such as noise in corporate communication, noise in group communication, noise in mediated communication, etc. Communication will be more effective and interactive if there is no noise existed.

For example, Ela’s son was watching a cartoon video on Television with the volume on high when she was talking to her husband. The sound of the cartoon video bars Ela to listen to her husband’s speech so it is an example of a communication barrier or communication noise or communication distraction.

In conclusion, these nine elements are the essential component of the basic communication process, for example, context, sender, encoder,  message, channel, decoder, receiver, feedback, and noise. The communication process might get faulty without any of these elements.

Citation for this Article (APA 7th Edition)

Kobiruzzaman, M. M. (2021, February 3). Communication Elements: The Nine Components of Basic Communication Process. Educational Website For Online Learning.

6 thoughts on “Communication Elements: 9 Elements of Basic Communication Process”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.