Lasswell Model of Communication 1948 Examples & Components

Lasswell’s Communication Model Example. Advantages and Disadvantages of the Lasswell Model of Communication.

Lasswell Model of Communication

Lasswell’s linear communication model consists of five elements: who says what, in which channel, to whom with what effect. American psychologist and sociologist Harold Lasswell introduced a linear communication model in 1948. It is also known as the Action Model in communication. Harold Lasswell’s model describes the communication process with five questions; “Who? Says what? In which channel? To whom, and with what effect?” These are the five fundamental components of the Lasswell model. The researcher did not explain the feedback; therefore, it is a linear communication model. It was a significant model for explaining the verbal communication process.


Example of Lasswell Model of Communication

A news reporter disseminates news regarding the negative impact of social media on BBC television to inform the general public.

Lasswell Model of Communication Components

The five components of Lasswell’s model are:
  1. Who
  2. Says What
  3. In Which Channel
  4. To Whom
  5. With What Effect

Harrold Lasswell’s model is also known as the 5Ws model for these five elements.


Who refers to the sender of the message who initiates the communication. It also indicates the speaker and writer of the communication process. For example, the message’s sender is the news presenter, journalist, or political speaker.

For Example, A politician delivering a speech to mass people during a campaign rally.

Says What

Says What refers to the message of the communication. The question “Says What” is intended to identify the sender’s statement. For example, a news presenter delivers a FIFA World Cup 2022 news update.

Another Example: The politician’s message may include promises of development and criticism of opponents.

In Which Channel

In Which Channel describes the message transmitting pathway. It shows how the information reaches target audiences. The channel of communication differs based on the communication way. For example, Television, radio, and newspapers are communication channels in mass media. In contrast, hearing, seeing, smelling,  and touching are message-transmitting channels in face-to-face communication. In non-verbal communication, the communication channels are “Physical Appearance, Paralinguistics, Body Movement, Gestures, Posture, Facial Expression, Eye Contact, Proxemics, Haptics, Chronemics, Artifacts, and Environment.”

Example: The politician’s speech may be delivered through various channels, such as live television broadcasts, social media platforms, or public appearances.

To Whom

To Whom describes the individuals to whom the message is delivered; it is also known as the receiver of the communication process. The receiver is the audience who receives the information. The sender disseminates the message through a particular channel to reach receivers (To Whom). For example, the news reporter conveys information to the audience who listens to them.

Example: The audience for the politician’s speech may consist of supporters, undecided voters, members of the opposing party, and journalists covering the event.

With What Effect

With What Effect illustrates the output of the message. It also validates whether the receivers comprehend the message or not. Sometimes, the sender cannot persuade the audience due to communication noise, faulty channels, and lack of speaker capability.

Example: The effect of the politician’s speech may vary among different segments of the audience. Supporters may feel inspired and energized, undecided voters may be swayed, opponents may become more entrenched in their views, and journalists may report on the speech in the media, influencing public opinion.

According to Lasswell’s communication model, there three functions of communication are Surveillance of the surroundings, Correlation of elements of society, and Cultural integration between generations. 

Lasswell Model of Communication  Examples

1. For example, if a news presenter broadcasts the FIFA World Cup information to inform Football lovers, we can relate the Lasswell model to this event. It analyzes who is disseminating information (News Presenter), What is saying (FIFA World Cup information), Which channel the news presenter is using to transfer information (Television), and “Effect” is the objective of the news.

2. Another Lasswell model example of a situation is the newspaper advertisement. We can see that the organization promotes its products via newspaper channels to inform customers.

3. Politicians address speeches on the Radio to motivate voters to vote for their parties.

4. Lecturers send assignment instructions to students via email to get their information.

6. An organization sends appointment letters to candidates through postal and courier services.

7. Students submit assignments to the lecturer on an A4 paper sheet.

8. The HR manager posts current company rules and regulations on the notice board to inform all employees. 

9. A writer publishes his latest book series for readers.

10. A motivational speaker gives a speech on how to lead a happy life with limited wealth through a YouTube channel. 

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Lasswell Model  of Communication
Advantages of the Lasswell Model

Firstly, the Lasswell model explains the information-transmitting process by throwing five questions to the readers. The answer to these questions indeed describes the whole communication process.

Secondly, the model is suitable for all verbal communication processes, including human communication.

In addition, this model has excellent heuristic significance, and the concept has been utilized in several types of research.

Disadvantages of the Lasswell Model

Firstly, the Lasswell formula is an outdated model of communication. Lasswell model does not indicate the feedback clearly to this model; hence, it is suitable to explain only one-way conversation but not transactional interaction like face-to-face interaction.

In addition, the Lasswell theory does not appropriately explain the nonverbal communication process since it mentions the “Who Say” component. In the nonverbal communication context, senders convey messages without spoken words.

Moreover, the Lasswell model cannot explain effective communication adequately, such as the interaction between two individuals. In face-to-face communication, both the sender and receiver provide feedback simultaneously. There is no feedback in the Lasswell model that can explain interpersonal and group interaction.

Furthermore, Lasswell’s model completely ignores the communication noise barriers to effective communication.

Finally, it is a propaganda-based linear model. This model focused on describing social and political propaganda.

Despite having advantages and disadvantages of the Lasswell model, it is still a famous model for students to study linear communication.

Lasswell’s Communication  Model Explanation

Lasswell Linear Model of Communication Explanation Image or Photo

Who and when establishes the Lasswell communication model?

Harold Dwight Lasswell’s short name (Harold Lasswell) established the Lasswell model in 1948.

What Type of Model is it?

Lasswell’s communication model explains a one-way communication process; therefore, it is linear, like Aristotle’s communication model, Shannon-Weaver’s communication model, and Berlo’s SMCR communication model. The linear communication model excludes feedback; in contrast, the transactional model includes it to explain two-way discussion.

Reference For This Article- APA 7th Edition
Kobiruzzaman, M. M. (2024). Lasswell Model of Communication 1948 Examples & Components. Newsmoor.

In-text citation
According to Kobiruzzaman (2024)
In research from Kobiruzzaman (2024)

Technology Adoption Theories and Models Examples

Technology Adoption Theories and Models. Explain Models for Technology Adoption. Also, Examples of Technology Adoption Theories and Models.

Technology Adoption Models

The technology adoption models refer to the theories and frameworks that explain why people accept and utilize modern technology. It also describes how people adopt modern technology and use them in communication, business, health, education, and other sectors. Technology adoption means accepting and utilizing modern technology confidently. Researchers have introduced several technology adoption models in the recent decade to describe the reasons for technology adoption. They also mention the significant factors of these models that stimulate people to accept modern technology.

On the other hand, academicians consider a few factors that drive users to reject modern technology. The technology adoption models play a critical role in further improving technology. The COVID-19 pandemic has proved the importance of technology adoption in social, political, educational, and business contexts. Therefore, nobody can deny the usefulness of modern technology and its application in personal life.

The Importance of Technology Adoption Models

Technology adoption models answer the most common question, “why do people use the new technology?”. In addition, the researchers and practitioners present factors that influence people to accept new technology. Technology has become an inevitable part of daily life. For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic, students have conducted virtual classes through online platforms such as Google Meet, Zoom Meeting, Microsoft Teams, and Skype. Additionally, many organizations have handled corporate meetings via these web conferencing applications. They have also generated virtual meeting minutes and submitted them to the technological tool. The technology adoption models are developed to propose the technology’s reasons and consequences. Technology adoption theories are related to information and communication models.

Technology Adoption Models and Theories

The Models of Technology Adoption are:
  1. Technology Acceptance Model(TAM)-1986
  2. Extended Technology Acceptance Model (TAM 2) (ETAM)- 2002
  3. Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT)- 2003
  4. Technology Acceptance Model-3 (TAM 3)-2008
  5. Extending Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT2 (2012)
  6. Motivational Model (MM)-1992
  7. Motivational Model of Microcomputer Usage-1996
  8. Uses and Gratification Theory (U&G)-1974
  9. Diffusion of Innovation Theory- 1962
  10. Perceived Characteristics of Innovating Theory (PCIT)
  11. The Model of PC Utilization (MPCU)-1991

These are examples of technology adoption models and theories.

1. Technology Acceptance Model(TAM)-1986

Fred D. Davis introduced the technology acceptance model(TAM) in 1986 in his Ph.D. thesis paper titled “A TECHNOLOGY ACCEPTANCE MODEL FOR EMPIRICALLY TESTING NEW END-USER INFORMATION SYSTEMS: THEORY AND RESULTS.” In 1986, Fred D. Davis initially included three elements: perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, and attitude toward using the system. The technology acceptance model outlines three factors: perceived usefulness, ease of use, and attitude toward using the system. It also represents the design feature with X1, X2, and X3.

The Original Technology Acceptance Model By Fred Davis (1986)- Technology Adoption Theories and Models

Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) (Davis, 1989)

Fred D. Davis published the technology acceptance model again, namely “Perceived Usefulness, Perceived Ease of Use, and User Acceptance of Information Technology ” in the Management Information Systems Research Center, the University of Minnesota, in 1989. So, the model is familiar as Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) (Davis, 1989).

Technology Acceptance Model (TAM)- Technology Adoption Theories and Models
Technology Acceptance Model (TAM)

Technology Acceptance Model (Davis, 1989) PDF

The study develops and validates the two constructs, perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use. The author also tested the validity and reliability of the variables with two six-item scales. Davis also proved that the construct “perceived ease of use” is a causal antecedent to perceived usefulness. These two constructs are prime determinants of system use and user acceptance.

Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) (Davis et al., 1989)

However, In 1989, Fred D. Davis, Richard P. Bagozzi, and Paul R. Warshaw presented the technology acceptance model in the research paper “User Acceptance of Computer Technology: A Comparison of Two Theoretical Models,” published by the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) located in Maryland, USA.

Fred D. Davis is a University of Michigan School of Business Administration professor. His research interests include user acceptance of technology, technology support to make decisions, and motivational factors of computer acceptance. TAM model was certainly derivated from the adoption Theory of Reasoned Action (TRA), which describes the factors that stimulate people to change human behavior. It has also been designated as the most cited model in the field of information and communication technology(ICT). The technology acceptance model(TAM) is undoubtedly one of the most significant technology adoption models.

Final Version of Technology Acceptance Model

Final Version of Technology Acceptance Models By Venkatesh and Davis (1996)

The Final Version of the Technology Acceptance Model was developed by Venkatesh and Davis in 1996. The Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) explains the user’s intention to accept technology by three variables: perceived usefulness, ease of use, and attitude toward use. The additional factors of the TAM are user education, system features, user participation in the design, and the nature of the execution method. However, it excludes the social influence factor on the acceptance of modern technology. So, the researchers and practitioners term it as the limitation of the model for being implemented beyond the workplace.

However, In 1996, Viswanath Venkatesh and Fred D. Davis included an additional variable, “External Variables”, to the previous model and outlined the final version of the Technology Acceptance Model.

“The TAM, TAM2, ETAM, TAM3 and UTAUT have been used over the years by various researchers to explain the adoption technology systems”.

2. Extended Technology Acceptance Model (TAM 2) (2000)

Venkatesh and Davis added new factors to the Technology Acceptance Model and established the Extended Technology Acceptance Model (TAM 2) in 2000. The extended technology acceptance model is also known as the TAM2 and ETAM. ETAM described two groups of constructs, for example, social influence processes and cognitive instrumental determinants.

Extension of the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM 2) or (ETAM) By Viswanath Venkatesh & Fred D. Davis in 2000

The three social influence determinants are subjective norm, voluntariness, and image. Additionally, the four cognitive instrumental processes of perceived usefulness are Job relevance, Output quality, Result demonstrability, and Perceived ease of use. Both social influence and cognitive instrumental determinants stimulate users to accept and use the system.

3. Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT) (2003)

Viswanath Venkatesh, Michael G. Morris, Gordon B. Davis, and Fred D. Davis established the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT) in 2003, under the title of the “User Acceptance of Information Technology: Toward a Unified View”.

The Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT) was developed from eight renowned technology acceptance modes. “The eight models are the theory of reasoned action (TRA), the technology acceptance model (TAM), the motivational model (MM), the theory of planned behavior (TPB), a model combining the technology acceptance model and the theory of planned behavior, the model of PC utilization (MPCU), the innovation diffusion theory, and the social cognitive theory (SCT).”

Firstly, the authors analyze the eight models and review the literature on user acceptance. Secondly, they investigate and compare those models’ extensions. Additionally, they develop the unified model based on the eight models’ components. Finally, the unified model was tested empirically and validated using data.

Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT) BY Venkatesh et al., (2003)

The four prime constructs of UTAUT are 1) Performance Expectancy, 2) Effort Expectancy, 3) Social Influence, and 4) Facilitating Conditions.

The first three constructs (Performance Expectancy, Effort Expectancy, Social Influence) determine user intention and behavior. However, the fourth element (Facilitating Conditions) directly determines user behavior. Besides, the four moderate variables are Gender, age, experience, and voluntariness.

4. Technology Acceptance Model 3 (2008)

Technology Acceptance Model (TAM3) was introduced by Venkatesh and Bala in 2008. TAM-3 provides valuable rational explanations of how and why individuals make a decision about the adoption and use of ITs, particularly the work on the determinants of perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use.

5. Extending Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT2) (2012)

Venkatesh, Thong, and Xu established the Extending Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT2) in 2012. They added three additional variables, including hedonic motivation, price value, and
habit, to the UTAUT in order to explain customer technology adoption. The Extending Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology contains age, gender, and experience to moderate variables; however, it excludes the variable of voluntariness.

Extending the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology 2

6. Motivation Model (MM) (1992)

Davis, Bagozzi, and Warshaw introduced the motivational model (MM) in 1992. The Motivational Model describes the external and natural stimulants that integrate users’ behaviors. According to the Motivation Model, the two crucial elements of motivation are extrinsic and intrinsic motivation. Firstly, extrinsic motivation includes perceived usefulness, ease of use, and subjective norm. It is the acknowledgment that stimulates the users to perform the action. On the other hand, intrinsic motivation includes the magnitude of enjoyment derived from recreating with a computer.

7. Motivational Model of Microcomputer Usage (1996)

The Motivational Model of Microcomputer Usage was introduced by Magid Igbaria, Saroj Parasuraman, and Jack J. Baroudi in 1996. It is also known as Igbaria’s model.

A Motivational Model of Microcomputer Usage

According to the Motivational Model of Microcomputer Usage, intrinsic and extrinsic motivators simulate people accepting or rejecting new technologies. This model describes perceived fun as the intrinsic motivator; however, perceived usefulness is the extrinsic motivator that influences people’s behavior to use of computers.

8. Uses and Gratifications Theory (1974)

Katz, Blumler, and Gurevitch established the uses and gratifications theory in 1974. It explains why people utilize specific kinds of communication media. It is an active audience theory that describes the gratification of the people using these media compared to others. The U & G theory explains why people utilize certain media and what benefits they get from it. The U&G theory includes three constructs; motivations, behavioral usage, and gratifications/ satisfaction.

9. Diffusion of Innovations Theory (DOI) (1962)

Diffusion of Innovations Theory explains why people accept or reject new ideas and technology. It also describes how the use of technology spreads among people quickly. In 1962, Everett M. Rogers published the diffusion of innovation theory in his book Diffusion of Innovations. Therefore, it is known as rogers’ theory of technology adoption.

Diffusion of Innovations Theory (DOI) By Rogers (1962)
Diffusion of Innovations Theory (DOI) By Rogers (1962)

The five elements of the diffusion of innovation theory are Innovators, Early Adopters, Early Majority, Late Majority, and Laggards.

10. Perceived Characteristics of Innovating Theory (PCIT) (1991)

Moore and Benbasat introduced the perceived characteristics and innovation theory in 1991. Perceived Characteristics of Innovating Theory is certainly developed from Rogers’s perceived Attributes Innovation (PAI) theory. Perceived Characteristics of Innovating Theory added two additional factors: Image and voluntariness. It also separates the constructs of observability into Visibility and Results Demonstrability. Additionally, PCI renamed Rogers’ complexity to ease of use and remained other characteristics the same as before.

11. Model of PC Utilization (MPCU)-(1991)

Thompson, Higgins, and Howell established the PC Utilization (MPCU) model in 1991. They extended Triandis’ model to explain PC utilization attitudes. The  Model of PC utilization describes six elements of personal computer utilization such as job fit, complexity, long-term consequences, effect towards use, social factors, facilitating conditions, and experience in order to predict PC utilization behavior. However, it differs from the Theory of Reasoned Action as it differentiates between cognitive and affective elements of attitudes.

Model of Personal Computer Utilization (MPCU) Thompson et al. (1991)
Model of Personal Computer Utilization (MPCU)

Constructs used in the Model of PC Utilization (Thompson et al. 1991)- Technology Adoption Theories and Models