Interpersonal Communication: Listening Essentials

Individuals who want to develop or refresh their interpersonal communication skills

Please contact us for information about prerequisites.

Expected Duration
60 minutes

Sir Winston Churchill said ‘Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.’ Effective listening takes more than just courage; it also takes constant learning and practice. To prepare for effective listening, you need to identify and overcome the barriers that stand in the way of effective listening. You also need to be an attentive, empathetic, and active listener. When you engage in the technique of active listening, you focus your attention completely on the speaker, listen carefully for meaning, then use feedback to verify that you’ve correctly understood the communication.
This course explores the benefits and challenges of effective listening and demonstrates how active listening techniques enhance the effectiveness of your listening skills. It takes you through the various levels of listening and outlines behaviors and thought patterns that demonstrate active listening techniques. Finally, it highlights the important skill of providing listener feedback to demonstrate or clarify understanding of the speaker’s communication. Materials designed to support blended learning activities aligned with this course are available from the Resources Page.


Skills for Effective Listening

  • recognize how to overcome the listening barriers exhibited in a given scenario
  • recognize behaviors and thought patterns that demonstrate key active listening techniques
  • distinguish between examples of the four levels of listening
  • provide appropriate verbal feedback to demonstrate or clarify understanding in a given scenario




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