A course to help you communicate professionally and personally. Be understood using written or spoken words and even body language.

Course CodeVWR100
Fee CodeS1
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment

It's Easy to Enrol

Select a Learning Method

I am studying from...

Enable Javascript to automatically update prices.

All prices in Australian Dollars.

Click on Enrol Now to See Our Payment Plans Available. No Obligation.

Courses can be started at any time from anywhere in the world!
Learn how to communicate effectively and be understood.

Effective communications can result in:
  • Improved customer service
  • Increased profits
  • Improved relationships with customers, colleagues and suppliers
  • Workplace issues resolved much easier
  • Having your message understood
Learn how to structure your words so your message is understood by the receiver.
Improving your communication skills can benefit your personal and professional relationships and can positively influence your career prospects. Employers want people who can communicate effectively on many platforms and to a variety of audiences.
Effective communication skills can enhance your life in so many ways. If people can understand what you are trying to say, you can learn to build more effective relationships with friends, family colleagues, suppliers and customers.

Lesson Structure

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction
    • Problems with Poor Communication
    • Barriers to Effective Communication
    • Giving Instructions
    • Evaluating Instructions or Orders
  2. Types of Communication
    • What is Appropriate Communication
    • Passive, aggressive and assertive Communication
    • Listening
    • Obstacles to Listening
    • Empathic Listening
    • Ways to Indicate You are Listening
    • Informative Language
    • Persuasive Language
    • Imaginative Language
    • Literal Language
    • Figurative Language
    • Formal Language
    • Colloquial Language
    • Communication Channels
  3. Language Skills
    • Reviewing your Writing
    • Evaluating your Writing
    • Concise Wording
    • Condensing your Writing
    • Common Problems contributing to Lack of Conciseness
    • Clear Wording
    • Making Meanings Clear
    • Causes of Confusion; homophones, malopropisms, colloquial meanings, ambiguity
    • Simplicity
  4. Writing Skills
    • Where Writing Skills are Used
    • Writing for a Purpose
    • Determining the Purpose
    • Knowing Your Reader
    • Guidelines for Effective Writing
    • Language
    • Planning What You Write
    • Business Letters
    • Writing a Business Letter
    • Other Types of Business Documents
    • Writing Themes
    • Types of Themes: analogy, chronological theme
    • Common Gramatical Errors to Avoid
    • Punctuation
  5. Developing Writing Skills
    • Writing Fundamentals
    • Improving a Piece of Writing
    • Newspaper Writing
    • Concise Wording
    • Magazine Articles
  6. Visual Communications
    • Hand outs
    • Visual Materials; illustration, charts
    • Digital Technology
    • Digital Applications; Graphics, CAD, Multi media, Internet, etc.
  7. Public Speaking
    • Audio Aids
    • Recorded Presentations
    • Speaking in Public
    • Principles of Public Speaking
    • Selling
  8. Committee Meetings
    • Functions of a Meeting
    • Conducting a Committee Meeting
    • Role of Office Bearers
    • Taking Minutes in a Meeting

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


  • Explain the communication process
  • Explain the types of communication approaches used.
  • Demonstrate language skills that are concise and precise.
  • Explain the importance of writing as an effective form of communication.
  • Demonstrate writing skills as an effective form of communication.
  • Describe various forms of visual communication and how they are generally used to impart messages.
  • Prepare for effective verbal communication.
  • Conduct committee meetings.

Clarity is a Good Starting Point for Better Communication

You must always consider:

  • How well is an idea translated into words?

  • How well are words perceived by someone who hears them?

These two points have the potential for error in accurately translating the idea from one person to the other.

When putting an idea into words follow these rules:
1. Use words which are most familiar to the receiver
2. If you want the receiver to give an unfamiliar meaning to a familiar word, use it in the context of your communication, making it clear what it is about. If necessary use a footnote.
3. If you want to use an unfamiliar word, make its meaning clear.


This can be done in three ways:

1. Illustrative Contexts
A word is stated, and followed by a paragraph or sentence to give "one" fixed meaning to that word. For example, for the word hot:
   "He was hot in the desert" means little unless you illustrate how hot!
   "He was hot in the desert; so hot that he collapsed, shriveled up and died."
The illustration in this sentence has put the word hot into a context which removes other possible interpretations of the heat being mildly uncomfortable but not life threatening.

2. Glossing
A gloss was originally a note in the margin to explain a word. Today we either use footnotes or put the note in brackets straight after the word being explained.

3. Defining
Defining involves classifying something, telling what it is in a way which separates it from everything else in existence. Example: A ball is a round three-dimensional object.


Homophones - words spelled differently but sounding the same. Examples: complement and compliment; principle and principal; stationary and stationery; there and their.

Malapropisms - words used for others because they sound similar. Example: You can illiterate a common cold with hose hip syrup, instead of you can alleviate a common cold with rose hip syrup.

Colloquial meanings - where an established word develops a new additional meaning outside of the traditional definition. Example: "Catch up" with the latest news, or that new boy at school is "square".

Words in sentences influence other words used with them (particularly words which they are written next to). This can lead to the same word having two possible meanings. These second meanings tend to appear without the writer noticing them. You should review what you write sentence by sentence to eliminate such words.

Causes of ambiguity
1.Vague reference of pronouns
Example: If the food is not hot enough for the dog, boil it. 
The pronoun “it” has been used in a way which does not clearly indicate that the food should be boiled. If misread, you may think that the dog should be boiled.

2. The rule of proximity is ignored
Example: The lady with the red hat entered through the door with a dog.

3. Adverbs not placed properly.
Example: He luckily won  
Luckily, he won.

4. Bad punctuation
The boy was not chosen because he was young.
The boy was not chosen, because he was young.
In the first sentence it is not clear whether he was or was not chosen. He might not have been chosen because he was young, or he may have been chosen but for some other reason.
The comma in the second sentence gives a clearer explanation: he definitely was not chosen.

5. Ambiguous words
A chemist who advertises "We dispense with accuracy".

Who will benefit from this course:

Administrators, office staff, managers and others who have to write often in any aspect of daily life.

Client-facing sales staff, in both B2B and B2C fields.

Amateur and aspiring writers seeking to build confidence in their abilities, or improve their fundamentals.

English as a second language speakers looking to improve their written fluency and work/study communication skills.

At the end of this course you will: Learn to communicate more effectively. Learn how to write effectively and be understood.

  • Know the difference between parts of speech

  • Understand how to communicate more effectively

  • Write effective, easy-to-understand materialwith ease, from general emails to work reports.

Next steps:

Want something more in depth? Learn about our certificates and longer study programs in journalism and writing here.

Effective communication skills will help you get your message understood by your desired audience. Communication skills are an essential life skill. Improving your communication skills will help you in your professional and personal life.

In a professional context, communication skills are vital. Getting your message out there and understood is important and can benefit everything from sales, productivity to reducing workplace accidents.

Interested in this course? What's next?
Select your mode of study- online, e-learning or correspondence and enrol now. You can start this course at any time. Alternatively, if you have any questions about this course, contact ACS Distance Education today and our friendly staff will answer your queries.


Need assistance?

Start Now!


John Mason

Writer, Manager, Teacher and Businessman with over 40 years interenational experience covering Education, Publishing, Leisure Management, Education, and Horticulture. He has extensive experience both as a public servant, and as a small business owner. J
Jacinda Cole

Former operations manager for highly reputable Landscape firm, The Chelsea Gardener, before starting his own firm. Gavin has over 20 years of industry experience in Psychology, Landscaping, Publishing, Writing and Education. Gavin has a B.Sc., Psych.Cert.
Christine Todd

University lecturer, businesswoman, photographer, consultant and sustainability expert; with over 40 years industry experience B.A., M.Plan.Prac., M.A.(Social). An expert in planning, with years of practical experience in permaculture.
Creative Writing
Creative writing can be applied not only to articles and books; but in everything we write, from marketing material to social media. Writing that is creative will usually be more interesting, communicative and effective. This book explores not only how to
English Grammar
Grammar demystified -Learn the rules of grammar, punctuation, sentence construction; etc, for writing or editing. Grammar provides a coherent structure for the expression of thoughts and ideas. By following grammatical rules we are able to construct logic
Photographic Techniques
Explore how to take better photos. This is a book packed full of practical tips, from the authors own experience, coupled with a solid introduction to well established and widely practiced photographic techniques. This is a well illustrated, excellent ref
Professional Writing
Professional writing is any writing that you are being paid for. It can include fiction writing, a best-selling book, articles in a magazine, articles in a newspaper, blogs for companies, technical manuals or procedure manuals, copy for catalogues, newsle