Four Sides Model

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by kylynn1
Last updated 5 years ago

Social Studies

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Four Sides Model

Matter LayerWhat I inform aboutThe matter layer: On the matter layer the sender of the news gives data, fact and statements. It is the task of the sender to send this information clearly and understandably.The receiver proves with the Matter ear, whether the matter message fulfills the criteria of truth (true/untrue) or relevance (relevant/irrelevant) and the completeness (satisfying/ something has to be added).In a long-term team the matter layer is clear and needs only a few words.

Friedemann Schulz von Thun


Relationship LayerWhat I think about you (you-statement) and how we get along (we-statement)The relationship layer expresses how the sender gets along with the receiver and what he thinks about him. Depending on how he talks to him (way of formulation, body language, intonation ...) he expresses esteem, respect, friendliness, disinterest, contempt or something else.Depending on which message the receiver hears with relationship ear, he feels either depressed, accepted or patronized. A good communication is distinguished by communication from mutual appreciation.


Self-Revealing LayerWhat I reveal about myselfIn every news there is information about the sender. On the layer of the self-revealing or self-disclosure the sender reveals himself. This message consists of conscious intended self-expression as well as unintended self-revealing, which is not conscious to the sender. Thus every news becomes information about the personality of the sender.The self-revealing ear of the receiver perceives, which information about the sender are hidden in the message.

The AppealWhat I want to make you do:Who states something, will also affect something. This appeal-message should make the receiver do something or leave something undone. The attempt to influence someone can be less or more open (advice) or hidden (manipulation).On the Appeal ear the receiver asks himself: "What should I do, think or feel now?"


Can you hear me now?

The four sides of communication•The matter layer contains statements which are matter of fact like data and facts, which are part of the news.•In the self-revealing or self-disclosure the speaker - conscious or not intended - tells something about himself, his motives, values, emotions etc.•In the Relationship-layer is expressed resp. received, how the sender gets along with the receiver and what he thinks of him.•The Appeal contains the desire, advice, instruction and effects that the speaker is seeking for.


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