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Abstract

Basic communication courses are increasingly taught in mass-lecture formats. Research on teacher verbal immediacy, teacher nonverbal immediacy, teacher credibility, and student motivation has failed to contrast the relationships between these four variables has failed to contrast the relationships between these four variables in different basic course formats. Respondents enrolled in self-contained (n =326) and mass-lecture (n =865) formats of basic communication courses completed surveys measuring these four classroom variables.

Results showed that all variables were positively and significantly correlated in both formats. However, four of the six correlation coefficients between teacher verbal immediacy, nonverbal immediacy, teacher credibility, and student motivation were statistically higher in the self-contained format. Verbal immediacy, teacher credibility, and student motivation scores were statistically higher in self-contained formats. These results show that past research has produced some potentially misleading conclusions about these variables. Discussion of the results, suggestions for mass-lecture instructors, and research directions are proposed.