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Name: Alexis Ortega

Directions: The passage below is from a public speaking textbook. Read the passage, and then complete the
attached outline of it. Use the outline to write a summary paragraph that includes the major details. Be sure to
paraphrase the information into your own words.
Five Types of Listening
The first thing good listeners must do is figure out why theyre listening. Researchers have identified
five kinds of listening that reflect purposes you may have when communicating with others: appreciative,
discriminative, empathic, comprehension, and critical.
Appreciative listening focuses on something other than the primary message. Some listeners enjoy
seeing a famous speaker. Others relish a good speech, a classic movie, or a brilliant performance. On these
occasions, you listen primarily to entertain yourself.
Discriminative listening requires listeners to draw conclusions from the way a message is presented
rather than from what is said. In discriminative listening, people seek to understand the meaning behind the
message. Youre interested in what the speaker really thinks, believes or feels. Youre engaging in
discriminative listing when you draw conclusions about how angry your parents are with you, based not on
what they say but on how they say it. You draw inferences form the presentation of the message rather than
from the message itself.
Empathic or therapeutic listening is intended to provide emotional support for the speaker. Although
it is more typical of interpersonal than public communication, empathic listening does occur in public speaking
situations, for example, when you hear an athlete apologize for unprofessional behavior or a classmate reveal a
personal problem to illustrate a speech. In each case, your role is supportive.
Listening for comprehension occurs when you want to gain additional information or insights form a
speaker. You are probably most familiar with his form of listening because youve relied heavily on it for your
education. When you listen to a radio newscast, to a classroom lecture on marketing strategies, or to and
elections official explaining new registration procedures, youre listening to understandto comprehend
information, ideas, and processes.
Critical listening is the most difficult kind of listening because it requires you to both interpret and
evaluate the message. It demands that you go beyond understanding the message to interpreting it and
evaluating its strengths and weaknesses. Youll practice this sort of listening in class. A careful consumer also
uses critical listening to evaluate television commercials, political campaign speeches, or arguments offered by
the salespeople. When you are listening critically, you decide whether to accept or reject ideas and whether to
act on the message.

German and Gronbeck,


Principles of Public Speaking, pp. 38-39

Outline Directions: Fill in the missing information into the outline using the passage. (5 points)

Topic: Five Types of Listening


Main Idea: __Using the five types of listening to figure out why you are listening _________
I. _Appreciative____________
a. To entertain yourself
II. Discriminative
a. To understand the meaning behind the message
III. _Empathic/therapeutic_______
a. To provide support to the speaker
IV. Listening for comprehension
a. To understand information and ideas
V. ___Critical____________
a. To interpret or evaluate

Summary: Using the above completed outline, write a paragraph summary of the passage. Be sure to
paraphrase the information into your own words. It should begin with a main idea statement followed by the
major supporting details. (10 points)
People listen and communicate with each other every day for different reasons. Studies show that there
are five different types of reasons to listen. For example, in appreciative listening, you are listening to entertain
yourself. If you are listening to understand the meaning behind the message of what is being said, you are
discriminative listening. An empathic or therapeutic listener listens to provide support to the reader. Listening
for comprehension is to understand the information and ideas. Finally, critical listening is to interpret or
evaluate the message.