PhD, Senior Researcher
Institute of Higher Education of the National Academy
of Educational Science of Ukraine
TEACHER COMMUNICATIVE COMPETENCE: DIFFERENT THEORETICAL APPROACHES
Summary. The article analyzes different theoretical approaches to the structure of communicative competence of a higher education institution lecturer. The own composition of the components of communicative competence is offered, taking into account conditions of integration of higher education and science at university.
Key words: communication, competence, communication competence, higher education, integration of higher education and science.
Humanity evolving to the new civilization stage of its development requires educational paradigm change, transformation from education oriented on assimilation of the accumulated volume of mankind knowledge, to the global system of open, flexible, individualized, continuous education and self-education throughout a human life. Since communication is an essential condition, as well as consequence, content, form of education, the quality of communicative processes ultimately depends on the quality of the higher education.
In terms of the higher education and science integration, a university lecturer creates conditions for a student to have an opportunity to work with his experience, develop communicative and organizational skills, plan researching activity, make decisions and be responsible for them, and etc. Therefore, a significant factor in the restructuring of the educational process at university, during which all students participate in the process of cognition, solve educational and scientific problems along with a lecturer, plunging into the real atmosphere of scientific cooperation, is the transformation of the traditional communicative role of a lecturer – from a translator of some kind of prepared knowledge to a facilitator, a moderator, a tutor, a coach. This process requires from a lecturer the high-level communicative competence.
The communicative competence of a higher education lecturer in the conditions of the integration of higher education and science is offered to define as based on the fundamental psychological and pedagogical knowledge, values of professional communication, partnership dialogue experience, the skills and techniques of communication ability of a lecturer to interact effectively and perform communicative tasks in the process of intellectual cooperation of all the participants of educational process.
Communicative competences, as a rule, are generally referred to as transversal (general, universal, key), that is, those that «are formed by the applicant in higher education in the process of studying according to this educational program, however are universal and are able to be transferred from the context of one educational program into another» [8, p. 24]. Transversal competencies are common to any profession and any degree of higher education; they can be used to solve problems not only in the professional context and allow individual to adapt in the complex changing world.
In teaching activities, communicative competencies are to be considered as professional; hence the effectiveness of the professional teaching activity depends on a level of a lecturer’s formed communicative competence. Communication is a crucial condition, it is a content, a form, and a consequence of the education. Universities performance has a communicative basis: established knowledge are broadcasted, actual scientific problems are identified and analyzed, methods of their solution are identified, new hypotheses are introduced, formulation of concepts are clarified, results of world scientific researches are interpreted, etc. Consequently, the communicative competence is one of the most important components of the professional competencies of scientific and pedagogical employees in the higher educational institutions.
The framework of the teacher's communicative competence was first grounded in research by American scholars Brian Spitzberg  and Rebecca Rubin, Jerry Feezel . Independently from each other this scholars proposed theories for communication competence. Their model included four key elements: motivation, knowledge, skills, context: to be perceived as a competent communicator an individual must have the motivation, knowledge and skills to communicate as well as be sensitive to the context that the communication occurs.
The several scholars continued to add to the original model, highlighting and clarifying key parts of the framework. In later articles B. Spitzberg (2000) insisted that communication competence is located in perception rather than behaviours. Competence cannot be measured without taking into consideration all of individuals involved in the communication act; the communication competence model included subjective evaluations of effectiveness of a communicator. Because being more motivated, knowledgeable or skilful would not guarantee competence if the person is not able to demonstrate the behaviour expected by the communication partners and satisfies them .
Similarly, Rubin (1994) stated that «communication competence requires knowledge of appropriate and effective communication behaviours, a repertoire of skills which correspond to that knowledge and the motivation to perform those skills in a socially appropriate and effective manner» [3, p. 75].
Philip M. Backlund, Sherwyn P. Morreale (2015), insist that despite a lengthy discussion, there is currently no generally accepted definition of the communicative competence or its structure [1, p. 35]. Revealing the content of the communicative competence, most researchers explain the list of its components.
Thus, Russian researcher I.A. Zimnyaya offers a component content of any competence, including communicative, as follows:
- a motivational aspect of the competence (readiness to exhibit the competence);
- a cognitive aspect of the competence (knowledge of the competence content);
- a behavioural aspect of the competence (an experience of competence exhibiting in various standards and non-standard situations);
- an axiological aspect of the competence (an attitude to the content of the competence and to the object of its application);
- an emotional-volitional aspect of the competence (an emotional and a volitional regulation of the process and a result of the competence exhibiting) [7, p. 25-26].
O. Filatova, having designed a general structure of the competence, proposed by I.A. Zimnyaya, on the communicative, created her own model of a lecturer’s communicative competence and included the following components:
- a motivational-value component includes a lecturer’s readiness for professional development, reflects a steady interest in innovation, the need for professional growth, the desire for self-development and self-realization;
- a cognitive component contains knowledge of the content of communicative competence, reflects the knowledge of the essence and role of the communicative competence associated with the knowledge of the another person, includes an ability to solve various problems, that arise in communicating, effectively;
- an operational-activity component contains an experience of displaying competence in a variety of standard and non-standard situations, a lecturer's ability to personally-oriented interaction during the educational process, the ability to maintain an emotional balance, to prevent and resolve conflicts in a constructive way; possession of oratory, literacy in oral and written language, public presenting of their work results, selection of the optimal forms and methods of self-presentation; the ability to develop a strategy, tactics and techniques of an active interaction with a person, to organize joint activities for achieving determined socially significant goals, the ability to assess a situation of an interaction of the educational process subjects non-biased, the ability to predict and substantiate the result of an effective interaction .
K. White convinced that teacher communication competence model consists of four major components:
- knowledge – building of repertoire of communication skills;
- judgment – choosing appropriate communication skills;
- practice – trying new communication skills;
- evaluation – reflection and assessing satisfaction with communication skills [6, p. 43].
S.O. Skvortsova, Y.S. Vtornikova in a monograph «Professional and communicative competence of a primary school teacher»  substantiate a structure of the teacher's professional and communicative competence as a composition of its components:
- emotional (self-control, ability to control own emotions, ability to create an atmosphere of emotional comfort in the educational environment, ability to assess the emotional state of a partner in the pedagogical communication and, accordingly, to module own behaviour; empathy, an ability to recognize and understand the emotional state of students (colleagues, parents), their feelings, emotions, mood, attitude towards the pedagogical communication, etc.);
- verbal-logical (ability to analyze educational information; to determine the logical sequence of facts; to logically and consistently express their views during pedagogical communication; and to teach teaching material; ability to convincingly formulate own opinion for establishing effective pedagogical communication, etc.);
- interactive (an ability to organize joint communicative activity during studying, an ability to listen to the interlocutor (pupils, colleagues, parents), humanistic orientation to the pedagogical communication, politeness, tact with pupils (colleagues, parents); a complex of a teacher’s personal qualities: sociability, flexibility, tolerance , sense of humour, ease, justice);
- social and communicative (an ability to solve conflicts in the pedagogical communication competently, in the educational environment, possession of organizational skills, adherence to the norms of the pedagogical ethics in their own pedagogical practice and pedagogical communication, etc.);
- technical (a teacher’s skilfulness in techniques of technology and tactics of the pedagogical communication, a teacher’s ability to select language means as well as non-verbal means of communication correctly to provide a vivid expressive language in a classroom during studying,) [9, p. 127-138].
We offer the composition of the communicative competence of a higher education institution lecturer, basing on the need to transform a traditional communicative role of a lecturer in terms of integration of higher education and science and taking into account the experience of the components of the communicative competence structuring by the previous researchers, as follows:
- a motivational-value component, which includes the need to communicate with students and enjoy it; the readiness of a teacher for the professional development, the need for the professional growth, a steady interest in the innovation activity; the enriching of a teacher’s own professional experience; an openness to the new scientific and pedagogical knowledge, new forms of communication;
- an emotional-volitional component: self-control, i.e. an ability to control own emotions; an ability to create a comfortable communicative atmosphere of mutual understanding that motivates students to participate in research activities; to create favourable conditions for independent and meaningful training of students; to intensify and stimulate cognitive motives, curiosity, promote the development of an active personal position and self-actualization of students; empathy; an ability to assess the emotional state of students and, accordingly, build up their behaviour;
- an interactive component: an experience of displaying the competence in a variety of standard and non-standard situations in an educational environment; a teacher's ability to personally-oriented, partners’ interaction during the educational process; an ability to organize joint educational and research activities; an ability to prevent and overcome conflicts in pedagogical communication in the educational environment effectively; to help students to overcome the difficulties that arise in the interpersonal interaction; take into account relationships, students’ personal sympathies and antipathies when grouped together to perform research activities; courtesy, tactfulness, recognition of a student's right to disagreement, in his own opinion, to a mistake; ability to motivate participants in the interaction to equal and tactful communication; an ability to intensify an analytical and reflective activity of students, development of their researching and designing skills, communicational and teamwork skills; flexibility, tolerance, sense of humour, ease, justice;
- actually communicative component: an ability to analyze, generalize and highlight the core issue for the effective exchange of scientific and educational information, to establish the truth or falsity of interlocutors statements, to listen carefully, to ask questions and to answer them; to organize and maintain educational and scientific dialogue or discussion; language skills (proper pronunciation, knowledge and skills in spelling and competent construction of sentences and texts, in scientific correspondence or academic writing; eloquence, skilfulness in formal writing as well as foreign communication), literacy in means of non-verbal communication, an ability to select the best forms and methods of self-presentation, etc.
Thus, the communicative competence of the university teacher (lecturer), aimed at communicative tasks fulfilling in the process of the intellectual interaction of all participants in the educational process, is one of the basic components of the teacher's professional competence. In the context of the integration of the higher education and science, the teacher's ability to personally-oriented, partnership communication throughout the educational process is a significant factor in the quality of education and professional self-actualization of a higher education institution lecturer.
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