These questions ask you to compare three different theories’ approach to a concept. Each question specifies the concept and the three theories. You will be expected to compare and contrast, not just define a lot of information from each theory. Don’t just give me a dump of information, but try to think about what the questions is asking about. To study for this, consider points of comparison between theories that we’ve looked at and the potential usefulness or application of the different theories.There are no right or wrong answers per se to the essay questions, only better or worse answers. Poor answers will not answer the question or lack evidence that you understand the theories. Decent answers will indicate that you understand and can apply the theory. Good answers will demonstrate that you can see the relationships between the theories. The questions are application questions or questions that ask you to provide your own argument about how the theory should be considered. The answers should be your own work. You certainly shouldn’t be providing entire phrases and sentences from outside sources and representing them as your own when answering the question. You have to answer the question, and don’t write abstractly or write like you’re quoting definitions.
1. Compare and contrast McPhee’s Communicative Constitution of Organizations Theory with Geertz and Pacanowski’s Cultural Approach to Organizations. How are they similar in how they approach organizational communication? In what ways do they view organizational communication differently? [Do NOT start this by summarizing what both theories say; this is an essay question not a short definition question.]
2. You’ve studied 2 theories that dealt with culture in this unit: Speech Codes and Face Negotiation theory. In what ways do these theories define culture similarly? In what ways do these theories define culture differently? From these understandings (so don’t just make random stuff up), how would you define culture? [Notice from the underlining that I’m not asking you to compare the theories generally; I’m asking you to compare them in regard to a particular aspect.]