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OASIS Writing Skills

Undergraduate Writing:
Body Paragraph Sample A

Undergraduate resources in the Writing Center

Body Paragraph, Sample A

It is through the means of communication that I can share my values, thoughts, beliefs, feelings, and experiences with others. Face-to-face communication allows me to use both verbal and nonverbal cues, making it the richest and most powerful form of communication. According to Dobkin and Pace (2006), verbal communication consists of “messages expressed through a formal language, using oral, written, or signed words” (p. 14). Nonverbal communications are “messages expressed through symbols other than words, including hand gestures, facial expressions, touching, vocal inflection, and clothing” (Dobkin & Pace, 2006, p.14). The access to nonverbal cues in face-to-face communications creates bonding and adds intimacy to my personal relationships. Expressing love through touch or looking into someone’s eyes to display affection are examples of the power of nonverbal communication. Additionally, nonverbal cues decrease chances of misunderstanding in my interactions with others, and have a vital role in expressing my feelings and perceiving emotions in others.

The Writing Center’s Response: This paragraph is successful because it sets up the topic of verbal and nonverbal communication in a face-to-face setting right away and then follows through on that topic with definitions, specific examples, and benefits. Thus, the paragraph is both meaningful and focused. The writer uses direct quotes effectively by integrating them with her own words (rather than just placing them as stand-alone sentences). The student has appropriately credited the source used—a textbook by Dobkin and Pace—with citations. Finally, the paragraph includes a variety of sentence constructions, which contributes to a pleasing rhythm and flow.

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