HUMS 1541: Interpersonal Communications and Helping Relationships

Students explore self-awareness as a foundational concept in the development of competent human service workers. The focus is on furthering self-knowledge and facilitating the development of self-reflection skills. Students will build personal awareness, self-understanding and effective interpersonal communication by examining aspects of self, such as motivations, emotions, values, attitudes, beliefs, perceptions, learning styles, personal styles, and self-concept.


After successfully completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Acknowledge motivations, emotions, values, attitudes, beliefs, perceptions, learning styles, personal styles, self-concept, how we affect others and how others affect us.
  • Develop personal awareness, self-understanding, and effective interpersonal communication.
  • Attend to conscious use of self, and relationship building as they apply to helping relationships.
  • Describe relevant concepts and major theories associated with the study of interpersonal communication.
  • Apply basic communication skills (questioning, paraphrasing, summarizing) that can be used in interpersonal and helping relationships.
  • Identify the key concepts related to group functioning and group roles.
  • Notice and describe how social location and diversity influence their human service practices.

Course outline

HUMS 1541: Introduction to Interpersonal Communication and Helping Relationships includes the following eleven modules:

  • Module 1: Why a Self-Development Course in the Human Service Diploma Program?
  • Module 2: Introduction to Interpersonal Communication
  • Module 3: Interpersonal Communication and Perception
  • Module 4: The Professional Skill of Listening
  • Module 5: The Verbal Skills for Effective Listening
  • Module 6: The Non-Verbal Skills for Effective Listening
  • Module 7: More About Ourselves: Interpersonal Communication and Diversity
  • Module 8: Interpersonal and Helping Relationships
  • Module 9: Interpersonal Conflict
  • Module 10: Group Work in Human Service Practice
  • Module 11: Mindfulness and Intentionality

Required text and materials

Students will need to source the following on their own:

  1. Beebe, S.A., Beebe, S.J., Redmond, M. & Salem-Wiseman, L. (2018). Interpersonal communication: Relating to others. (7th Cdn. Ed.). Don Mills, Ontario: Pearson
    ISBN: 978-0-13-427664-9

    Note: The eText can be purchased via the TRU Bookstore.


To complete this course successfully, you must achieve a passing grade of 50% or higher on the overall course and 50% or higher on the mandatory Final Project.

Quiz 1: Mod 1-4 20%
Quiz 2: Mod 5, 6 & 8 25%
Assignment 1: Diversity Research 35%
Final Project: Self-Knowledge Inventory (mandatory) 20%
Total 100%

Please note that for this course to apply to the completion of your Social Service Worker Certificate, you must obtain a C grade (60%), or higher, overall in the course.

Open Learning Faculty Member

An Open Learning Faculty Member is available to assist students. Primary communication is through the “mail” tool in the Learning Environment or by phone. You will receive the necessary contact information when you start your course.

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