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Publisher's Summary

It likely comes as no surprise that, as adults, we learn differently than we did when we were children. Our brains are full of experiences and information we have acquired over time, and these resources are exactly what we apply to any new learning event, whether it’s a new job or hobby, or simply a novel experience or conversation we need to navigate. And the nature of how we learn shapes the way we communicate - both how we give and how we receive information in our everyday lives.

The field of neuroandragogy is the study of how adults learn and what role the brain plays in that process. By digging into this unique field and its discoveries, you can better understand how your own mind works and develop strategies based on this knowledge to communicate successfully in various situations and environments. As you will see, communicating with others is not just about clarity. Useful and rewarding communication is also about understanding how to grab someone’s attention and how to ensure that the information that you share can be retained and used. Knowing how the adult mind works can help you to optimize your approach in getting the results you want from your communications.

In The Brain-Based Guide to Communicating Better, Professor Allison Friederichs will walk you through six lessons that can help you better know your own mind, and thus understand and transform your own methods of communication. You will learn how your brain acquires, processes, and retains information. You can then take that knowledge and apply it whenever you need to convey something to others, with the best possible results. While you may not have any control over how other people communicate, developing your own methods of connection and conversation can have a positive impact on both your personal and professional life. Along the way, Professor Friederichs encourages you to keep a communication journal that can help you learn and process the invaluable information she shares. Keeping a journal allows you to have a continual resource for both her lessons and your own observations.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.  

©2021 The Great Courses (P)2021 The Teaching Company, LLC

What listeners say about The Brain-Based Guide to Communicating Better

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Much less informational than expected.

I feel obliged to say a book about effectively communicating your ideas has to shoulder it's fair share of the blame if I come away from reading it underwhelmed. A disappointing number of the strategies proffered by this course are of the "if your intended learner is paying attention to their phone, ask for their full attention for a moment," variety. It's telling that one of the best practical tips I can recall was to highlight an important date in an email to make it more likely to be remembered. Seriously. I'd feel more guilt about being bored by this book if it didn't simultaneously put so much of the onus on we the speakers to communicate effectively.

Purchasing this audiobook was like buying a fancy set of knives from a late-night infomercial only to receive a cleaver and two spoons in the mail. Not the useful array of tools I anticipated. I suggest you choose a different book.

8 people found this helpful

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It's ok

This is extremely short for an entry in the great courses. There also isn't anything particularly new or memorable to this. What sticks out to me most is the suggestion to use multiple "modalities" when teaching - for example, lecture and show visual aids and ask questions.

5 people found this helpful

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If you are looking for depth, you will not find it

This audiobook is probably wonderful for it target audience, however I was unable to listen beyond 45 minutes The narrator and author states she is not a neurologist, but a teacher. It feels as though a layman has excitedly read a few books on the subject and now has become an authority for other layman. Statements such as "The brain is reeeaaallly complicated" isn't helpful, and only makes me feel the author "reeeaaally" doesn't know the topic beyond a superficial level. Also, she speaks with a high rising terminal. It started off as annoying, then it became very distracting, and I was unable to listen any further. She is probably a wonderful teacher to those would benefit from her style.

1 person found this helpful

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Great listen, easy to understand

This course was so pleasant to listen to as the narrator really knew her topic and really wanted to help others understand what they had to share. I listened to it in half hour segments over the course of a few weeks and got great value from it but was also able to stop and start easily as well. Solidified some stuff I knew about communications and taught mee tremendous ideas for my future communications!

1 person found this helpful

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it was okqy

I liked one of her previous courses, but this didn't hurt he mark for me. some good info but feel like a lot of it could've been condensed

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Good course.

Very good communication course. Practical, clear and concise information on the subject matter of human communication and understanding.

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  • JD
  • 07-18-22

Informative and thought-provoking

Good set of informative lectures delivered in an easy-to-follow format. Good voice delivery. Enjoyed it.

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Solid

This is a solid course. It provides food for thought. I’m glad I listened to it. I recommend this to other listeners.

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Enjoyably insightful guidance!

I enjoyed it very much! From the beginning to the end, Aliison helped me to understand how our brains work and how to apply them to effective communication. She is very good story teller. The tips and guidance are very useful and practical. I started listening to it wanting to learn about communication but I have got more than that. The knowledge is very useful for understanding ourselves, improving our learning approach as well.

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A great course

I really enjoyed this course. Interesting information is provided and the performance is beautiful. Thank you!

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  • Mohammed RABHI
  • 07-26-22

Short Book - Interesting Facts !

It is a short book, although interesting facts but not so many aha! Moments and hard to follow, would have appreciated takeaways breaks and recaps!

Nonetheless, these are my take aways!

  It is nearly impossible and time wasting to make others change, it's better to improve one self communication skills. Making ours clear and more impactfull.

Sections of the brain:

• Our brain's primary function is social thinking, it is through social interactions that learning is facilitated.
• Our brains are alike at most but the way we constructe meaning is different, therefore, we see the world differently! (Depending on how we put a meaning to sensory data, previous experiences, associated pictures, we could associate a smell with a happy memory whereas others finding it disgusting..)
• We use 100% of our brains all the time!
• There is no particular section or hemisphere response for rational or intuitive thinking.
• Neuroplasticity: the more we challenge our brains, we learn more and better.

Memory :

Sensory Memory : classifies which sensory input directs our attention toward and saving it into our short term memory which hold around 7 items and lasts between 20 to 30sec (it can be improved though!)

Working memory : usage of short and long term memory to work out something (addition calculation..)

Long term memory:
• Sementic memories: facts you recall.
• Episodic memories: happened in a particular time, place, context..
• Procedural memories : how to do things.
• Prospective memories: things you are planning to do in the future.

Tips on improving memory :
• Why you are learning something and how are you planning on using it. (Emphasis on its importance, storytelling, emotional connection..)
• Association of new data with old one. (Cues, patterns..)

We notice things that we deem important and that matches our beliefs.

There are no studies pointing to the negative impact of technology on learning but they do show that it does impact attention! However, it's not the fact of using technology but multitasking while using it.

Ask someone for their individed attention, if they start looking at their phone,  simply stop talking, this appears as a a polite behaviour but it's more of a chance to get their full attention, if you multitask you allow others to do so as well..

Spark curiosity of the person you are communicating to helps cultivate their attention.

Say things other people relate to, something in which they could see themselves. They need to connect with your story!

Pre conceptions should be addressed or taken into consideration when sharing new ideas or learning new things (fishes story about land life).
   You should always try to connect with existing knowledge to the listner prior knowledge.

"No one can understand anything if it's not connecting to something they already know"

  You could ask them what they already know, question to evaluate their knowledge and know where to create the link to the building bloc.

  Inquires about prior knowledge:
• What is your experience with..?
• Do you remember...?
• Have you ever..?

It is not only necessary to cultivate others attention but you need to be a good listner as well!

Analogy :
  The story about faith, being married to someone although you don't know 100% that he is the only one who you could have had a happy marriage with them.

Churchill "a speech should be like a women dress, long enough to cover the subject but short enough to keep interest "

Our brain process things at a much faster rate than someone's speech or lecture (that's why we quickly get bored and search for other stimulantes)
Humans can talk at a 100 word per minute*

Teaching information makes it easier to remember.

Space repetition.

Assisted learning (scafelding): give clearer directions, share or teach small pieces each time, understand when and where your communicator require assistance.

Avoid using jargon.

Anxious mind vs Curious mind.
  Back in the day,  the brain had 2 states only (anxious vs safe)
   Until this date, our brain prioritises safety as first then emotional input then it can attend to whatever we have down the list (learning for instance), so if we feel safe and the environment is positive , we feel connected with the content we can learn better!

  Don't push their mind to become anxious, don't be the source of stress!

Do not challenge someone ideas or beliefs as having two opposed thoughts brings in the anxious mind, it's at that time that they sink and block any new information. It's better to understand why they think the way they do and start from there..

2 people found this helpful

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  • Potentilla
  • 07-31-22

interesting and informative

interesting and informative, lots of tips and techniques for communicating more effectively with others in any scenario.

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  • Daniel b.
  • 07-26-22

Not a bad book

Not a bad book but it's one of thoses books that you need to listen to a couple of time

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  • Anna Nym
  • 07-07-22

Great course

I very much enjoyed listening to the course, it was engaging and well presented. also, it gave me ideas and tools to improve my communication

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  • Yuli
  • 07-18-22

communication made easy

highly recommend this audible, easy to read and the speaker shared the ideas in engaging and informative ways. there was no dull moment in this audible, and it's the first course that tackled communication and learning to adult brain. I love it so much I listened to it twice!