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Developing Effective Communication Skills Education Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Education
Wordcount: 3557 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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The order in which you sit or stand will provide messages to the person you are communicating with. Sitting with your arms crossed can mean ‘I’m not taking any notice’ which will give a negative effect to the person you are trying to communicate with. However if you lean forward it will pursue that you are showing interest or intense involvement. A good posture is needed to influence a person as to create a good reaction about you. In a health and social care environment such as a day care centre you will need to sit or stand in a position which the person you are communicating with feels comfortable as this will be necessary to show a good impression. For example if you are having a one-to-one talk in a day care centre you will need to show you have a positive posture as this constructs a positive form of response to the elderly person you are talking to and get down onto their level so they feel relaxed communicating with you.


Gestures may include hand and arm movements which can help us to understand what a person is saying. A hand gesture may involve bad/good signals such as friend/not friend and also the middle finger which is known as swearing to the young generation. The gestures matter to a person as in order to communicate this will need to be on point as it includes positive/negative impressions to a person. Within a health and social care setting, gestures are important to get right as a location such as a hospital you will need to have a formal atmosphere which includes gestures such as hands showing where things may be or even helping an elderly/child/adult to move.

Facial expressions:

The faces you make indicate your emotional state. If a person is in a sad mood they can show this emotion by looking down this may show tension in their face so their mouth will be closed. On the other hand, a happy person will have wide eyes that make contact with you and also they will smile. This shows you how they are feeling and the order you should communicate back with them and react in the way they would like you to. In settings such as an elderly care home, you will need constructive facial reactions as this represents the care home they stay in and they will require good service as they are loving people and sensitive if given wrong facial expressions such as a screw face. Moments such as having an emotional conversation with a client in settings such as GP’s you will need to have sympathy to them and show them your facial reaction in a understanding reaction, if you are showing a negative facial reaction the conversation will never be serious and may ending up hurting an individual’s feeling.

Eye contact:

Your eye contact is a crucial factor which will influence interactions in a health and social care environment such as a nursery this is because when talking to a child or a staff you will need to have direct eye contact with them as if you do not they will get a feeling you don’t find the conversation important enough. The best way to let a person feel you are involved with them is to look at them while they speak and not invade their personal space. If one has their back to them with no eye contact in a health and social care environment this can create a conversation with people behind you to talk about you behind your back or even show negative hand gestures.

Body Language:

As well as posture, your body movements will also commune messages. Such as, the way you walk, move your head, sit, cross your legs and so on will convey messages about whether you are tired, happy, sad or bored. In a health and social care setting such as a day care setting the body language will provide essential training as one will need to prepare on how to react with a person that is maybe emotional or even short tempered. In a setting such as a nursery your body language will explain the type of person you are, the reaction to your body language will show children, staff and also parents how you are, a child may also imitate the way you react so in order to create body language it will need to be positive to duplicate.

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P4: Explain strategies used in health and social care environments to overcome barriers to effective communication and interpersonal interactions.

M2: Review strategies used in health and social care environments to overcome barriers to effective communication and interpersonal interactions.

I will be explaining some of the strategies that are used in health and social care environments that are used to overcome barriers to effective communication and interpersonal interactions. Some of these are:

Slang (informal English):

Slang is a shortcut of ways which young people talk in the modern days and some of the words are ‘peng, Skeen, wag1’ these are a distraction to the modern life as this shows that formal English is not used a lot. To overcome this barrier we will need to use the correct terminology to talk and understand this way is not right as it can effect an individual’s communication as people may feel left out if they do not know the right slang and it may also hurt a person’s feeling if using slang. In a health and social care environment the way an individual should talk is officially this is because many people do not understand the modern way of talking and it is the incorrect verbal way of talking, so the right way of talking should be done formally. Within a hospital setting if a nurse is talking to a patient using slang this will be very informal and the patient may feel that the nurse is not serious to be working within the environment; this will cause lack of concentration towards the patient. Also in a health and social care setting such as a school to talk to young children using slang will be a high disadvantage this is because they will discover these words and will create a distraction at home and even their studies as during written work they may start to write using the language they have learnt which is informal.


A deaf person is someone that is lacking the power of hearing or having damaged hearing.

To overcome this barrier there are many strategies some of the ways are:

If a hearing aid does not create a big difference to an individual’s hearing the other option is to use:

British Sign Language:

This is a strategy in which people in Britain communicate with deaf people. The British Deaf Association had explained that British Sign Language is the first or most preferred language of many deaf people in the United Kingdom. Sign language is a way to overcome the barrier as this strategy makes deaf people understand what we are saying and what they are saying to, however you will need to know how sign language is worked and know all the background behind it and you will need experience to do this before starting a conversation with a deaf person otherwise you may send a wrong message to them.

In a health and care environment such as a residential care home the British Sign Language may be a good way to communicate as some may be hard at hearing and will need to communicate in such a way that both people understand.

Also within a health and social care setting such as a hospital there may be patients that are deaf, to overcome this the nurses, receptionists and staff within the environment should be aware of this barrier and will need to be taught this before working as this will be a advantage as the form of communication will rise between the two that are communicating.


This means when a person has lack of vision which means they are unable to see.

A person can use glasses or even contact lenses as they improve the vision, however if this does not help one can use what is called Braille to overcome the barrier of being blind.


This is a system which can be felt with fingers. This system provides a means of written communication which is based on the sense of touch, for people that have limited vision. The system is popular for reading and writing by the people that cannot see written script.

Computer software can also translate written pieces into Braille. This is helpful to communicate with those that have difficulties with their eye sight as this makes them feel as if they have a chance to communicate in a special way to others. Within a health and social environment it may be essential to use Braille as this helps the people with lack of eye sight; this gives them a hope to communicate in a unique way and is a way to regain their eye sight. In a school/college/university the doors of the rooms may have braille which will give the people will less vision to have a chance to experience with braille, as this may be the only way they can communicate.

Learning difficulties:

This is when an individual has a learning difficulty; he or she finds it harder to learn than most children of the same age range.

To overcome this barrier you can get private support and extra sessions which help develop the learning. However the other option is:


This is a system that develops language which uses speech, signs and symbols to help people with learning difficulties to communicate and to develop their language skills. Those that communicate using Makaton can speak a word and perform a sign using hands and body language. There are many symbols which can help people that experience learning difficulties to recognise an idea or to communicate with others. Makaton is tremendously flexible as it can be fixed to an individual’s needs and used at a level suitable for them.  It can also be used to share thoughts, choices and emotions, help people find their way and many more. This is also useful in a health and care environment as people that suffer learning difficulties suffer using speech but this system develops the learning and will be easier for people that communicate with them. In a health and social care setting such as a school which has individuals that experience learning difficulties, Makaton will be a superior way to communicate as in the environment the client may feel as if they have a high chance way of communicating and will understand what is happening within the environment which means he/she will be getting the same education as the rest of the children.

Distress and emotional difficulties:

Conditions which include have a stroke, being depressed or having other mental health problems can affect an individual’s capability to communicate this is because they affect the person’s ability to send and also receive messages effectively.

To overcome this barrier people can go and get professional help or within a health and social care setting one can also go and speak to a manager or a GP to get the help they require.

One-to-one communication:

This is when you start a conversation with someone you don’t know too well, so you should always try to create a right atmosphere between you two. It is essential to let the person talk more so they can tell you how emotional they are feeling and let out whatever they are feeling. In order to do this you will need to create a positive emotional atmosphere before you go on to discuss complicated issues. The person you are having a conversation will need to feel relaxed and feel as if you are trustworthy to talk to. In a health and social care setting you will need to behave in a official way which you cannot get to personal and you should be able to make them feel as if you will do something to stop there distress and emotional difficulties as what you do will be the best of the health and social care settings and for a better society.

D1- Evaluate strategies used in health and social care environments to overcome barriers to effective communication and interpersonal interactions.

I will be writing to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses and areas for improvement on the barriers to effective communication and interpersonal interactions which are used in health and social care environments.

Slang (informal English):

The first barrier I will be evaluating is slang which is an informal way of talking, the advantages of using slang in a health and social care environment is that it may be entertaining to use as it is a form of language that only makes sense to people with specialist knowledge. The advantages of using slang are that it makes easier communication in most communities such as youth clubs, secondary schools etc this is because many people are educated in this way of talking, also while texting the way to write also shortens the wordings of words which means it will take less time, and many people will understand.

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However the weaknesses of slang is that people may not understand it in a health and social care environment and they may think whatever is being said may be offensive which can hurt their feelings often. Also the other weakness of slang is that people may feel peer-pressured by their friends as they may not know how to talk slang. There are also interpersonal ways of slang which are done by hand gestures, eye contact which most young people learn from the society we live in today. Also the version of slang is mostly a corrupted version that signifies negative things toward a different age range of people. In a health and social care environment such as a school will disadvantage with the terminology of slang, this is because in duration of GCSE exams many students may get distracted with informal English which will divert them to do best and lower the grade they are supposed to get.

The areas for improvement of slang is instead of talking informally using slang, an individual should talk using correct terminology as this is needed to create a friendly atmosphere which people within a health and social care setting will understand and have no problems with. Formal English is required in everyday life as this will succeed you with a reliable career, useful friends and also good results. Correct terminology often encourages all to do their best and achieve well, as slang is frequently a distraction towards all and will cause problem within all stages of an individual’s life, in a good and bad way.


British Sign Language:

This is a strength as if a person is deaf the best possible way is to learn sign language and use this in a way to communicate. The advantage of using sign language in a health and social care environment is that people will feel as if they are treated equally and fairly compared to other people. This also shows the unique ways of learning new things such as sign language, the way to learn is interesting as well as it involves practical skills.

There is research which has been approved out which proves that deaf children who learn sign language at an early age are more rationally disposed to do well. This is mainly because of their increased ability to communicate with those around them. However, it is also because sign language is not, as many people incorrectly think, a system of gestures representing words, but a complex language system, just as the English. However, children who learn sign language have already learnt, essentially, about the way language works and is made up, which will help in future studies ,most remarkably if they decide to learn to speak English, or any other spoken language.

There are also advantages which overlap from academic advantages into social and cultural advantages. This will lead the children to be happier and more confident because they are aware their place in the world is protected.

On the other hand, the weaknesses of sign language being a barrier are that this process takes quite long to learn and many deaf people may also be slow learners which will also be a disadvantage. Also in order to get sign language perfect it takes a long amount of time required which may be destructive in a health and social care environment. Within a school environment if a child already knows sign language this will be useful however the rest may feel insecure as they do not know how to communicate within that certain way which will decrease their communication within the environment.

Lastly the areas of improvement for the barrier British Sign Language is that people in primary and secondary school should be able to get a chance to learn this method as this may be an advantage to them in the future if they would like to work within a health and social care environment that also takes in people with less hearing. The strategy of this can be improved by getting a range of sign languages so that it is more understandable for people that are not suffering from being deaf.

Learning difficulties-


Makaton is a barrier which strengths is that it is different from British Sign Language because it is a language programme which balance verbal communication with actions and other non verbal signs. Makaton consists a core vocabulary of particularly selected concepts and ideas. These are considered to be most appropriate for the needs of children and adults with communication and language difficulties. The choice of the process relies on the needs of the child or adult with communication problems and main people who play an important role in their lives. This is an advantage for a health and social care environment as here may be people that lack in speech and this system will be a good programme for them to develop for them.

http://www.elce.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=68&Itemid=103 : – last accessed: 09/10/12 – 20:44

The weaknesses of Makaton in an environment which requires health and social care is that not everyone understands this form of communication and this will be a problem as it takes quite long to get used to the system. An individual may also feel different from mainstream children which may decrease their confidence if they learn a particular way with Makaton. This will dispute the learning of the family, children and the individual itself.

The areas of improvement is that people that suffer less of speech should be taught this up to full standards as it is essential to do so as this is also a different way of learning and this makes them feel special and also educated. Also the use of Makaton should be taught in school within a variety of ways as this will be useful for children and elders as they may also experience in needing to use this way of talking as they grow older. The ways in which you communicate with people that experience learning difficulties will need to be precise as Makaton this will be to prevent insecurity of other ways of communicating that mainstream individuals communicate by.



The advantages of using Braille in an H&SC setting is that it is easily learned and it opens up the world of reading for sight impaired people. It also is smaller than the previous system, so it is better for embossing. Finally it adapts to the technology. Braille is a system that many people can learn even if they do not suffer less of sight; it is a practical task and can be done in an adventurous way.

http://brailleliteracy.weebly.com/advantagesdisadvantages.html :- 09/10/12 – 21:10

The weaknesses of Braille are that it cannot be read by a sighted person that has not learned it and also the errors cannot be erased. Also people that can read Braille may feel they are underachieving as they do not have the same techniques as people that have perfect vision, however it should be necessary to be taught Braille in a health and social care setting.

The areas of improvement within a health and social care setting is that Braille should be taught in all places as this can make the programme more interesting and just in case of loss of sight occurs. Also the health and social care setting will be a successful place to be educated with the facility such as Braille.

Distress and emotional difficulties-

One to one communication:

The strengths of this is that a high position such as nurse/ GP etc, can build a close relationship with the patient as the patient will be required to open up and seek help in order to stop feeling like this. In addition it gives you a chance to say what you feel and what you find hard to tell others.

The weakness of this strategy is that they may be threatened to open up and there problems may be too serious that they feel it is not your problem. The patient may also not be a socialising person which will cause distress.

The areas of improvement are that to share problems and thoughts of emotional difficulties and distress should be advertised so that people feel more confident and there are a large variety of groups attending which makes the population big, this is necessary in a health and social care setting otherwise people may lack in keeping things away from you.


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