Dell Hymes Speaking Model

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Learn the Dell Hymes Speaking Model and communicative competence that includes discourse competence, strategic competence, linguistic competence, and other types of speaking. Dell Hymes created the term communicative competence, within the ethnographic study of language use.

Part of what makes a great communicator is knowing how to interact with people according to the specific situation. In this video, I walk you through the mnemonic SPEAKING, a framework that the sociolinguist Dell Hymes created. This easy-to-remember acronym will help you determine how to speak to anyone across various cultures and social situations!

Our communication – the way we convey a message to an interlocutor – will differ according to a number of things.

Hymes created framework using the acronym SPEAKING to demonstrate that language needs to be studied within the appropriate cultural context.

The sociolinguist Dell Hymes created a framework using the acronym SPEAKING to demonstrate that language needs to be studied within the appropriate cultural context.

There is no one-size-fits-all for communication.

How to Speak up in any Situation using the SPEAKING Model from Dell Hymes

S – scene and setting – physical location of the speech

P – participants – people who are speaking

E – ends – the purpose or reason of the speaking

A – act sequence – speech acts and the order they are presented in

K – key – the way the speaking is performed (tone, manner, delivery)

I – instrumentalities – the mode of communication used

N – norms of interaction – the social rules of what is proper in conversation

G – genre – the type of speech act or event (gossip, jokes, conversations) within  the culture

The elements of the framework are all culturally dependent, which illustrates that learning a language is also about learning the culture.

Happy Explearning 🌠