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Behavioral Communication is a psychological construct that addresses people's use of day-to-day behaviors as a form of communication. Specifically, it refers to people's tendency to express feelings, needs, and thoughts by means of indirect messages and behavioral impacts.
Basically, any behavior (or its absence when one is expected) may be judged as communicative if it has the intent to convey a message. For example, an expressive hairstyle, a show of a certain emotion, stonewalling (emotional withdrawal), or simply doing (or not doing) the dishes all can be means by which people may convey messages to each other.
The construct of behavioral communication is conceived as a variable of Individual differences. This means that some people more than others tend to engage in behavioral communication in spite of the plausible alternatives of using verbal communication.
A measure of the construct, The Behavioral Communication Questionnaire (M. Ivanov, 2008), has been introduced at the Society for Personality Assessment conference in March, 2008.
The conceptual framework of the construct has been presented at Western Psychological Association Conference in April, 2008.
In March 2010, a manuscript detailing the construct and its measurement has been accepted for publication by the journal of Personality and Individual Differences, an official scientific journal for the International Society for the Study of Individual Differences. This manuscript is authored by Michael Ivanov, M.S., Ph.D. candidate at the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University and by Paul D. Werner, Ph.D., professor of psychology at the same university.
The current citation of this article in press: Ivanov, M., & Werner, P. D. Behavioral communication: Individual differences in communication style. Personality and Individual Differences (2010), doi:10.1016/j.paid.2010.02.033
A second phase of the research into behavioral communication will begin in a late spring of 2010. In this study, the role of behavioral communication will be explored within a context of romantic relationships and within a larger array of personality and communication variables. Prospective participants and researchers are welcome to contact the authors for more information.
- BehavioralCommunication.net is the official research website for the construct of behavioral communication.
- PsyResearch.org/behavioralcommunication features debrief information for research participants who took part in the first study (2006-2007) of behavioral communication.
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