Santa Monica College Communications Essay

After listening to ONE of the following options – and please keep in mind this is a 50-point assignment and under the rubric of critical thinking – i.e., do not just summarize or provide a plot summary – please use thelistening stages, barriers to listening, your own listening challenge and other course concepts to answer and expand on all prompts below.

Please engage with what you heard and please refer to Ch. 7 and Headlee’s “Listen” article when completing this assignment. You should/can also tie in points from Headlee’s TED Talk. This should be 2-3 pages double spaced.

1) TED Talk: (Links to an external site.)

2) TED Talk: (Links to an external site.)

3) TED Talk: (Links to an external site.)

4) Podcast: (Links to an external site.)

Please engage with what you heard and please refer to Ch. 7 and Headlee’s “Listen”(Links to an external site.) Download (Links to an external site.)
article when completing this assignment. The podcast is more abstract than the TED Talks but has a clear message in terms of many things we’ve covered this semester so far. You could even engage with the difference between “listening” to a podcast vs. “listening” to a TED Talk that you can simultaneously view and see the person delivering it.

Answer ALL of the following prompts to get you started. Then expand if you need to. Try to dig deep and engage with the readings and employ critical thinking and engagement.


  1. What were some of the main ideas of this talk?
  2. Do you believe listening and respect are related? Discuss your thoughts on this. What did you gain from this in terms of *listening*? If you chose the podcast, how was humor used to make a political point? How did you listen without a visual?
  3. Did you agree/disagree with this TED talk/podcast? Why or why not?
  4. What were the underlying messages?
  5. Do you believe that listening has the power to create change? Discuss your thoughts on this.
  6. What do you think are barriers to effective listening? Given the current political climate in the U.S. and how polarized people seem to be, how could we get more people to value listening and respect to move us forward? Is that possible? Why or why not?

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