July 21, 2008




Background of the Study

            This study seeks to investigate the different influences and implications of non-verbal communication in wedding arrangements. The term communication describes the process of sharing meaning by transmitting messages through media. It is important for a receiver to interpret the meaning of a particular communication in the manner the sender intended. Unfortunately, the communication process involves stages wherein the meaning can be distorted. Anything that serves to undermine the communication of the intended meaning is referred to as noise. The primary cause of noise stems from the fact that the sender and the receiver each exist in a unique way and they are influenced by several communication variables in different ways. Noise is more apparent in non-verbal communication (Deresky, 2005).

            Non-verbal communication refers to communication through behaviours without words. The media for non-verbal communication can be categorised into four types: kinesic behavior, proxemics, paralanguage and object language. Kinesic behaviour is the communication through body movements including facial expression and oculesics or eye behavior. A communication that is being influenced by space and proximity is referred to as proxemics. Paralanguage and object language refer to how something is said and how we communicate through material artifacts, respectively (Desresky, 2005).

            Communication – in anyhow – is evident everywhere we look. Even on weddings, especially on weddings that are taking place between two different cultures. Wedding communication is observed from announcing the engagement trough sending-out thank-you notes for gifts and participations. However, misperceptions and misinterpretations may emerge along the process, especially due on specific gestures and expressions, regardless of how effective communication techniques would be. The entire mood of the wedding is reveal in signs and symbols. More importantly, communication in pre- during and post-wedding may connote various meanings and may influence the entire arrangement itself. Non-verbal communications are mostly accounted for many of these.

            This is issue is decided to be investigated upon because the non-verbal communication influences have a standing impact on the couple and the life they are embarking and the people surrounding them. All throughout the process of wedding arranging the intended meaning of different action would be distorted. There is need to identify these critical points. However, while there is a drive to understand such influences and subsequent effects of non-verbal communication during wedding arrangements, more studies about communication are in general and are not focused on wedding arrangements.  

Research Questions

            This study will seek to address the main question which is: What are the influences of non-verbal communication in wedding arrangements? In connection, the research will answer the following specific questions:

  1. What are the positive and negative influences of non-verbal communication in pre-wedding arrangement? during wedding arrangement? in post-wedding arrangement?
  2. What are the implications of these influences in different stages of wedding arrangements?
  3. What are the determinants and indicators of these influences?
  4. What are the influences of kinesic behaviour, proxemics, paralanguage and object language in wedding arrangements?
  5. What are the perceived and actual communication noises in different stages of wedding arrangements?

Research Aims and Objectives

            The main aim of this research is to investigate the influences of non-verbal communication in different stages of wedding arranging. The study will address four key objectives as follows:

·        To investigate how non-verbal communication plays an important role during this process of marriage

·        To acquire a general knowledge on how non-verbal communication is being used in wedding arrangement

·        To identify the specific influences of the four mediums in wedding arrangement

·        To understand the effect of communication noises in wedding arrangement

Theoretical Framework

            To fully understand the influences of non-verbal communication in wedding arrangement, this study will use the wedding web designed by Jacko, Stephanidis and Harris (refer to Fig. 1). The wedding web is comprised of the connection of people that the wedding process involves. This model reflects the communication that must take place between them. It further reflects the distortion of intended meaning at different points that might caused by non-verbal communication and might lead to complications.


Fig. 1. Wedding web: potential people involved in the wedding process (Jacko, et al, 2003).


            There are two kinds of research methods that the study will use –descriptive and correlational. The descriptive research method uses observations and surveys. The purpose of correlational research is to discover the relationship between the variables. It will be then subjected to correlational statistics. Findings will be further interpreted and analysed to derive general themes.  



Deresky, H. (2005). International Management: Managing Across Borders and Cultures. Prentice Hall.


Jacko, J. A. Stephanidis, C. & Harris, D. (2003). Human-Computer Interaction. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.



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