SMCR Model of Communication- David Berlo’s SMCR Model of Communication

SMCR Model of Communication- Berlo’s SMCR Model of Communication Example Situation. Berlo’s Model of Communication.

SMCR Model of Communication

SMCR communication model refers to the Source-Message-Channel-Receiver model of communication developed by David Berlo in 1960. In 1960, David Berlo designed the SMCR communication model with four elements: Sender, Message, Channel, and Receiver. SMCR refers to the Source-Message-Channel-Receiver, which are essential elements of any communication process. Therefore, the SMCR model of communication is known as Berlo’s Source-Message-Channel-Receiver model. Berlo invented this model based on the Shannon-Weaver communication model (1949). He described some factors that make the communication process more effective. SMRC represents the Source, Message, Channel, and Receiver that are also part of 9 essential communication elements of the primary communication process.

There are three types of communication models: the linear, interactive, and transactional communication models. SMCR communication model refers to the one-way communication system. So, the SMCR model is a linear model of communication where feedback is absent.

Models of Communication

Berlo’s Model of Communication Example

Watching television news is a real-life example of David Barlo’s SMCR model of communication. It is also known as Berlo’s model of communication example situation. Firstly, the news presenter is the source of the news who disseminates the information. The news is the message, and television is the channel. Finally, the audiences are the receivers of the message who watch the television.  In this context, the audience cannot provide feedback. The four basic elements of Barlo’s model are the source, message, channel, and receiver. It is also a one-way communication process where the feedback is not presented. Similarly, reading newspapers is another example of Barlo’s model of communication. Print and broadcast journalism relates to one-way communication.

However, digital journalism, including social media-based citizen journalism and blogging, generates two-way communication, also known as the transactional communication model. The audience can comment to express their opinion.

For example, watching television, reading books, newspapers, magazines, and hearing an announcement.

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Figure 1: David Berlo’s SMCR Model of Communication
The Elements of Berlo’s Model of Communication are:
  1. Source
  2. Message
  3. Channel
  4. Receiver

1. Source

The source means the message’s sender who initiates the communication process by sending information to the receiver. David Berlo describes five factors related to the source: Communication Skills, Attitude, Knowledge, Social Systems, and Culture.

Communication skills

Communication skills refer to the ability to speak, reading, writing, and listening effectively. It also indicates the ability to use verbal and nonverbal communication cues during the interaction. Communication will be more effective if the senders and receivers both have excellent communication skills. The most common types of nonverbal communication are eye contact, facial expression, body language, gesture, posture, and so more.  The communication skill of the source or sender increases the effectiveness of the communication process.

Attitude

Attitude is the psychological factor of the sender and receiver that affects the meaning of the message. It is also an established perception of a person in which they think or feel about something. Thus, the meaning of the message depends on the source’s attitude and the receiver.

Knowledge

Knowledge indicates the level of actual information, familiarity, and experience on the discussion topic. Actually, the discussion topic is the message of the communication process. Therefore, the communicator feels comfortable discussing if the topic is familiar to them. However, knowledge does not imply the educational qualification or degrees of the sender or receiver.

For example, a football player will show more interested in talking about football rather than cricket. On the other hand, a cricket player will surely feel comfortable discussing a cricket game. Here, knowledge indicates familiarity with the subject of the discussion topic or message.

Social Systems

Social systems refer to the values, beliefs, behaviors, rules and regulations, locations, and religions. These factors influence the method of the communication process as well as the meaning of the message.

For example, the speaker is delivering an anti-America message in the American parliament election campaign. It is considerably sure that the audience will not receive and listen to his message attentively. It is an example of a location factor that is also part of the social system.

Culture

Culture refers to the community or social background where the sender and receiver are from. The meaning of the same message might be identical when people from different cultures interpret it. It is a significant factor from the perspective of nonverbal communication cues.

For example, exchanging “Salam” greetings among men and women is widespread in the Muslim community. Salam conveys the greeting message in the Muslim community; however, handshaking is another activity that also exchanges the same mean. On the other hand, handshaking is a standard greeting among men and women in Western culture.

2. Message

The message is the primary substance conveyed by the source or sender of the communication to the receiver. David Berlo proposed another five factors related to the message: Content, Elements, Treatment, Structure, and Code.

Content

Content refers to the entire body of the message from beginning to end. It is the actual information of the discussion. Content is the whole script of the conversation.

For example, the lecturer is teaching students on noise in communication. So, the full speech about communication noise is the content of the message.

Elements

Elements refer to nonverbal communication cues such as facial expression, eye contact, gesture, posture, and body movement. It makes the conversation more effective and productive. So, the communication might get boring without elements.

For example, the lecturer raises five fingers when mentioning the five basic noises in the communication process.

Treatment

Treatment refers to the communication way in which the message is conveyed to the audience. The communication way affects the communication system. It represents the message packaging. The examples of treatment in communication are delivering messages formally and casually.

For example, the teachers speak formally when delivering speeches in the classroom. However, the lecturer talks very casually when meeting students outside class.

Structure

The structure of the message describes the arrangement of the information. The effectiveness of the message depends on the message structure.

For example, the lecturer talks about the definition, types, and examples of communication noise. The students perceive the message clearly for its good arrangement.

Code

Code in the message refers to the form of message transmitting. The examples of the code are text, audio, video, visual, and so more.

For example, the teacher is speaking in front of the students; hence, the code of the message is audio.

3. Channel

Channel refers to the medium that carries the message from sender to receiver. There are many types of channels in communication such as telephone, TV, radio, newspapers, etc. Berlo highlighted the five senses as the communication channel, such as hearing, seeing, touching, smelling, and Tastitc. These five factors are part of the human communication process.

For example, the face to face class is more effective than an online class. The students can see the lecturer physically and hear the lecture clearly. Nowadays, many institutes conduct virtual classes through premium or free online meeting platforms. The channels denote the physical and virtual communication way to convey messages.

4. Receiver

Finally, R-Receiver is the person who receives the message or information in the communication process. David Berlo adds the same factors of the sources, for example, Communication skills, Attitudes, Knowledge, Social Systems, and Culture, to the Receiver.

Conclusion

David Berlo’s SMCR Model of Communication is the linear model of communication; therefore, the feedback is not present in the model. It is one of the significant communication models that describe the communication process through multiple elements, including Sender, Message, Channel, and Receiver.

5 thoughts on “SMCR Model of Communication- David Berlo’s SMCR Model of Communication”

  1. I’m asking this as a muslim, why were the examples related to Islam? This was somewhat disturbing.. thanks

    1. We are extremely sorry if our content makes you feel sad. we used this example only for better understanding nothing else. However, we have edited it you can check, and thank you again for your comment.

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