Improving Communication: The Ideas of John Wallen

  • A. Chinmaya
  • J. W. Vargo


This paper presents the major conceptualization of John Wallen, as they relate to interpersonal relations. Wallen advises us to be aware of three basic conditions of human existence: ( I ) Individual experience is private; (2) Each person is different; (3) People are interdependent social beings. Ignorance or denial of these conditions can produce a large interpersonal gap, which is a state characterized by inaccurate communication. Four skills are outlined which help bridge the interpersonal gap, thereby increasing communication effectiveness. The four communication skills are: paraphrasing, behaviour description, description of feelings, and perception checking. Included is a list of John Wallen's unpublished papers.
How to Cite
Chinmaya, A., & Vargo, J. W. (2012). Improving Communication: The Ideas of John Wallen. Canadian Journal of Counselling and Psychotherapy, 13(3). Retrieved from
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