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In this course, we introduce theoretical frameworks of communication which can be applied to people in organisations. Also we establish the importance of communication at all levels and within all areas of organisations. "Why don't you people communicate?" is far too often the exasperated outburst from customer to supplier, from supplier to customer, from subordinate to manager, from manager to subordinate and from colleague to fellow colleague. If the most common saying for failure is one of "I was never told", perhaps the next most common saying would be "But I was never asked!".

The problem with organisations is that they consist of more than one person. Without them there would be perfect linkage between operations; the sort of ideas given by theorists such as Fayol would be faultlessly carried out via principles such as unity of command and direction. Agreed goals could be worked towards unerringly.

There would be a sharing of perfect knowledge on product and technical information. Customers would provide unambiguous specifications; suppliers would provide goods and services which exactly fulfilled these requirements. The results of actions undertaken would be effortlessly carried back and further action taken as appropriate. There would be clarity of understanding of thoughts, feelings and emotions.

However, often this doesn't happen by the very nature of ourselves as human beings, the tasks which are to be accomplished in the work situation, and in our increasingly complex living environments.

We can, therefore, look at communication as being an enabling factor which allows us to perform the work of the organisation. We can look at effects on and barriers to this process. Clearly it is extremely important for us to understand how these might arise, if we are to take a determined look at improving organisational effectiveness and efficiency. We also consider how organisational structure impacts upon the flow of information required for co-ordination, decision-making and awareness.

But, does communication go further than this? Is it good enough to just remove barriers? Such corrections may be seen as somewhat limited in scope; certainly barrier removal is an essential requirement but at the same time, communication can be used to positive effect in the organisation. Thus, for instance, we consider its use as an intrinsic element of the organisation's identity when we consider the communication of culture.

The term communication covers a vast field of study. There are many books you can consult on specific skills such as report writing, presentations and interviews and body language. Our aim here is to cover basic concepts which offer insights into the world of communication at work. We include communications theories and models, barriers to communication, formal and informal communication and communicating culture.

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

    * explain what organisational communication means and its importance as a function of management.
    * identify types and examples of verbal and non-verbal communication.
    * demonstrate an understanding of the basic features of some models of communication.
    * analyse barriers to communication and recognise them in case study situations.
    * explain how communication occurs within formal organisation structures.
    * explain the role of communication in decision-making and its relation to centralised and decentralised systems.
    * discuss the advantages of both formal and informal communication networks in the organisation.
    * demonstrate an understanding of the communication of the organisation's culture.

Course Syllabus



Section 1: Communication Theories and Models


Purposes of organisational communication

Time spent by managers in communicating

Communication and leadership

Verbal and non-verbal communication

Five models of communication

Perspectives of communication

Section 2: Barriers to Communication

Barriers to communication

Message ambiguity



Physical noise and distance

Emotions - fear, anxiety, mistrust, anger


First impressions and frozen evaluations



Evaluate too early and not listen

Section 3: Formal and Informal Communication

Formal and informal communication

Vertical communication

Network patterns

Horizontal (lateral) communication

The grapevine

Section 4: Communicating Culture

Communication of culture

Selection of candidates


Job adverts

Brochures, job descriptions, person specifications

Interviews and the selection process

Induction training

Humility-inducing experiences and in-the-trenches training

Rewards and control systems

Reinforcing folklore and consistent role models


Tutor-marked Question Paper


On completion of your course, you will receive two certificates:
Certificate 1 is issued by Stonebridge Associated Colleges: Organisational Communication (Byte Size Skills Course) Certificate

Organisational Communication (Byte Size Skills Course) Certificate issued by Stonebridge Associated Colleges, to view a sample of the college’s award, please click here.
Certificate 2 is issued by ABC Awards: Level 1 Organisational Communication (Byte Size Skills Course) Certificate of Achievement

At the end of this course successful learners will receive a Certificate of Achievement by ABC Awards and a Learner Unit Summary (which lists the details of all the units you have completed as part of your course).

The course has been endorsed under the ABC Awards’ Quality Licence Scheme. This means that Stonebridge Associated Colleges have undergone an external quality check to ensure that the organisation and the courses it offers, meet certain quality criteria. The completion of this course alone does not lead to an Ofqual regulated qualification but may be used as evidence of knowledge and skills towards regulated qualifications in the future. The unit summary can be used as evidence towards Recognition of Prior Learning if you wish to progress your studies in this sector. To this end the learning outcomes of the course have been benchmarked at Level 1 against level descriptors published by Ofqual, to indicate the depth of study and level of difficulty involved in successful completion by the learner.

The course itself has been designed by Stonebridge Associated Colleges to meet specific learners’ or employers’ requirements. ABC Awards’ endorsement involves a robust and rigorous quality audit by external inspectors to ensure quality is consistently met. A regular review of courses is carried out as part of the endorsement process.

Who are ABC

ABC Awards is a leading national Awarding Organisation, regulated by Ofqual, and the Welsh Government[1]. They have a comprehensive portfolio of over 650 Ofqual regulated qualifications on the national Qualifications and Credit framework (QCF). It has a long-established reputation for developing and awarding high quality vocational qualifications across a wide range of industries. As a registered charity, ABC Awards combines 180 years of examination and assessment expertise but also implements a responsive, flexible and innovative approach to the needs of our customers.

Renowned for excellent customer service, and quality standards, ABC Awards also offers over 600 Ofqual regulated qualifications for all ages and abilities post-14; all are developed with the support of relevant stakeholders to ensure that they meet the needs and standards of employers across the UK.

Tutor Support    

With this course you will have unlimited access to your own personal tutor who specialises in their field of study. It is your personal tutor's role to ensure that you receive constructive feedback and to deal with any queries you may have. You are more than welcome to telephone, fax or email your personal tutor.

You will also have access to a dedicated and friendly team of administrators and course advisors who offer sound and professional guidance and advice when you need it. This ensures that you will never feel neglected and that you will always succeed!

  Requirements for Entry     

There is no experience or previous qualifications required for enrolment on this course. It is available to all students, of all academic backgrounds.

    Study Hours    

This is only an approximate figure and is dependant upon how much time you can dedicate to your studies and how well you grasp the learning concepts in the course material. Furthermore, at the end of each lesson there is a question paper that needs to be completed and returned to your tutor. You should allow at least 1 - 2 hours of study to complete each question paper.

The approximate amount of time required to complete the course is: 20 hrs.


    Additional Information    

Assessment Method

After each lesson there will be a question paper, which needs to be completed and submitted to your personal tutor for marking. This method of continual assessment ensures that your personal tutor can consistently monitor your progress and provide you with assistance throughout the duration of the course.

What's Included

  • All study materials
  • Study Guide
  • Full Tutor and Admin support
  • The course fee includes the awarding body registration and certification fee (valued at up to £30.00).


Advantages of this distance learning course:
  • Home Study: you declare when you study, no need to attend class at fixed times and fixed dates. Your study hours fit around you!
  • We will post all the beautifully printed course materials to you. Everything is written in a clear and easy-to-understand format.
  • Start this course anytime of the year! No need to wait until the new academic year starts. Enroll today so soon you'll start improving your CV or re-skill for your new career.
  • Create your own study routine, learn at your own pace, complete your course as quickly or slowly as your circumstance dictate.
  • Your home learning is totally supported by experienced tutors who guide, encourage and assess your progress. You will not be alone because all our tutors are friendly and approachable.


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Questions about this course? Contact Student Support / Course Advisors

Enrol by phone: call 0845 65 22 187 quote course code 605

Enrol by post: print this postal form.

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