The benefits of developing questioning skills are two-fold in the communication process. Firstly, they assist you in receiving the messages the other person is sending accurately and secondly, they allow you to check that your message has been accurately received.


1. Open Questions

Cannot be answered with ‘yes’ or ‘no’
Begin with: How? What? When? Where? Why?

Used to:

2. Clarifying Questions

Request more information
Contain phrases like: could you elaborate? can you give me an example?

Used to:

  • get more specific information about a subject
  • build common understanding
  • allow the other person to elaborate
  • show the other person you have been listening to them

3. Direct questions

Answered with a one or two word reply
Contain phrases like: how many? what time? how far?

Used to:

4. Closed questions

Answered with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’
Contain phrases like: is that right ? did you? do you agree?

Used to: