Gender communication is a wide-open field for research topics that range from the differences in gender body language to the purpose behind each gender’s listening skills. Social settings and relationships offer even more opportunities for research topics. Your topic could focus on a specific issue within female and male relationships and provide insight on some of the reasons for these issues.
Women and men use different forms of body language to establish, react to and counter dominance. Research these different non-verbal cues that exist between women and men and how they relate to the relation of dominance between them. You can focus your research on the events within a family atmosphere or a work atmosphere, where one of the two holds a higher position, or the situation where both are essentially equal in position. Avoid using couples for your research into this area as personal relationships could cloud your results.
Women and men suffer from an inability to interpret each other in a relationship. Gather a number of couples for a research study and plan to speak to each couple separately. Just prior to your conversation with each, separate the couple and have each write a list of things they commonly say to their mate and what they mean by those statements. Once together, let them take turns saying those things to each other and you ask their mate for their interpretation of the message. Determine if their interpretations are accurate or if they are regularly misunderstanding each other.
Socially, women and men relate to their friends in very different ways. Begin your research by looking for information on male social interaction and female social interaction. Specifically, look for similarities and differences between the two interactions. Examine the purpose behind each gender’s social interaction, their level of honesty or whether they demonstrate difficulties addressing certain personal issues. Remember that if you locate too many similarities, you may have to alter your topic to reflect your gathered information.
Within a conversation, women and men listen for different purposes. You can address your topic by researching the gender difference regarding the reasons that individuals listen in a conversation. Alternately, you can set up a research study where you present a prepared conversation to an audience of women and an audience of men, asking each to write down the most important parts of what they heard.
- Stanford University: The Clayman Institute for Gender Research: For Women Leaders, Body Language Matters
- Executive Associates, Cross-Gender Communication Differences: Understanding Them Can Help You Be More Effective; Kari Uman
- You Just Don't Understand; Deborah Tannen
- University of Nevada, Las Vegas: Sex Differences in Friendships; Sloan, et. al.
- Towson University College of Liberal Arts: Gender Differences in Communication
- Photo Credit anyaberkut/iStock/Getty Images
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