Unit name: Communication in care settings
Learning outcome: 3. Be able to overcome barriers to communication
Assessment criteria: 3.1 Explain how people from different backgrounds may use and/or interpret communication methods in different ways
It is important to be aware of an individual’s background and culture because it could influence how communication is interpreted.
For example, if an individual’s first language is not English, they may have a limited vocabulary, so wording should be kept simple and slang and jargon should be avoided.
An individual that has been abused in the past may not be comfortable with physical touch as a method of communication. Conversely, an individual born in France may greet someone by kissing on both cheeks, which may be deemed inappropriate in this country.
Many Muslims believe that touching somebody of the opposite sex is unnecessary and will avoid shaking hands.
Therefore, it is important to have a good understanding of the different communication methods of people from different backgrounds so that you know the reasons for behaviours and how to avoid misunderstandings.