The Skill of Questioning

The chapter “Finding About Others: The Skill of Questioning” has a main aim of explaining the number of different types of questions that can be used and how it contributes to communication. It identifies that questioning can be looked as a simple process by many, however it is quite complex and a powerful way of communicating.

The chapter has allowed me to think more about how I interpret questions and also how to ask questions as a student teacher. There are a lot more types of questions than I was previously aware of such as process, probing and leading questions.

Process questions allows the respondent to think intensively about the question being asked such as having time to think about their own opinion, making a judgement on the question and predicting. Research suggests that these types of questions are most efficient in developing the participation and achievement of individuals of high intellectual ability, however I disagree with this. I believe everyone is capable to think to intensively and bring their own opinion to what is being asked, certain individual’s may need extra support to do so.

The chapter emphasised that the lack of questions being asked in a classroom environment is due to pupils being concerned about the negative reaction from the class. I can agree with this research due to my own personal experience. I have learned that it can be common for individuals to judge or laugh at certain questions being asked in a classroom environment and this leads me to lack confidence to speak out within a large group of people. However, I am learning to overcome this as a developing student teacher.

Waterman (2001) has argued that both asking questions and answering is a vital part to communication and is essential to everyday life. Questioning is an ability that is constantly used, and it is a powerful tool to find out about someone.

Reference: ‘Finding out about others: the skill of questioning’, in Hargie, O. (2011) Skilled Interpersonal Communication: Research, Theory and Practice. 5th ed. London: Routledge.