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An Integrated Approach to Diversity Education: Intergroup Dialogues and CommonGround. Kelly E. Maxwell, Ph.D. Co-Director Roger Fisher, Co-Associate Director The Program on Intergroup Relations www.igr.umich.edu. National imperative on integrative learning.

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an integrated approach to diversity education intergroup dialogues and commonground

An Integrated Approach to Diversity Education: Intergroup Dialogues and CommonGround

Kelly E. Maxwell, Ph.D. Co-Director

Roger Fisher, Co-Associate Director

The Program on Intergroup Relations

www.igr.umich.edu

national imperative on integrative learning
National imperative on integrative learning

“[I]ntegrative learning is a shorthand term for teaching a set of capacities—capacities we might also call the arts of connection, reflective judgment, and considered action—that enable graduates to put their knowledge to effective use. Thus defined, integrative learning may certainly include the various forms of interdisciplinary learning. But it should also lead students to connect and integrate the different parts of their overall education, to connect learning with the world beyond the academy, and, above all, to translate their education to new contexts, new problems, new responsibilities.”

“Collectively, the practices that foster integrative and culminating learning can help ensure that students will learn to take context and complexity into account when they apply their analytical skills to challenging problems.”

Carol Geary Schneider, ISSUES IN INTEGRATIVE STUDIES, No. 21, pp. 1-8 (2003).

the program on intergroup relations statement on integrative learning
The Program on Intergroup Relations’ statement on integrative learning

More than multi disciplinary study or interdisciplinary study alone, IGR promotes integrative learning that is both interdisciplinary and life-wide learning in practice. Social Justice Education and Intergroup Relations are interdisciplinary fields of study requiring cognitive integration of concepts from several disciplines in an applied sense to complex social conditions. For example, students engaging in an examination of poverty may simultaneously apply concepts from economics, sociology, political science, public policy, social work and others during their work together.

igr an integrative joint program
IGR…an integrative joint-program

In IGR, our goal is the integrative learning of our students in and out of the classroom that promotes their reflective judgment and their reflective practice. Our intentional structure as a joint program in the College of Literature, Science & the Arts (LS&A) and the Division of Student Affairs (DSA) lends itself to the drawing together of the interdisciplinarity of a liberal arts curriculum and the life-wide learning of student development theory and student self authorship.

Our courses and programs are designed to challenge students at every level to deepen their interdisciplinary knowledge and retrieve the knowledge they have gained during their lived experience (tacit knowledge). The desired outcome is students becoming actively engaged citizens with the ability to integrate their critical thinking, social critique and self awareness for participation in a diverse democracy and global economy.

igr s mission to pursue social justice through education
IGR’s MISSION: To Pursue Social Justice through Education
  • As a joint venture of LSA and the Division of Student Affairs, IGR serves this mission by:

--offering academic courses

--facilitating co-curricular activities

--conducting research

--offering consultation and training, and

--developing a Global Living-Learning Program

  • Through these activities, IGR provides opportunities for students, faculty, and staff to learn, cognitively and experientially, about issues of intergroup relations,

--explicitly focusing on the relationships between social conflict and social justice.

the program on intergroup relations
The Program on Intergroup Relations

Theories of conflict and cognitive dissonance

  • Conflict between social groups is predictable, should not be repressed but should be expressed constructively.
  • Internal conflict when one’s values, beliefs and assumptions are challenged with new information.
the program on intergroup relations7
The Program on Intergroup Relations

Contact theory

  • Intergroup Contact Increases Understanding
  • Important contact conditions
    • Equal Status
    • Sustained Personal Contact
    • Supported by Authorities
the program on intergroup relations8
The Program on Intergroup Relations

Theories of “modern/aversive/symbolic” –isms

  • Paradox between attitudes and behaviors.
  • Conflict between conscious egalitarian values and less-conscious aversions
the program on intergroup relations9
The Program on Intergroup Relations

Student Development Theory

  • Understanding the cognitive and emotional growth pathways to young adult development
  • Allowing students to participate as partners in learning
cognitive and affective design
Cognitive and Affective Design
  • Low risk to high risk
  • Personal to institutional
  • Abstract to concrete
  • Knowledge/awareness to application
tabletop
Tabletop
  • Discussion &
  • Worksheet
video
VIDEO
  • Intergroup Dialogue Video
what is intergroup dialogue
What is Intergroup Dialogue?
  • Face-to-face meetings between members of two (or more) social groups that have a history of conflict or potential conflict.
  • The groups are broadly defined by race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, ability, religion, socio-economic class and other social group identities.
intergroup dialogue is
Intergroup Dialogue is…
  • A STRUCTURED (but flexible) process
  • SUSTAINED over an extended period of time
  • FACILITATED by persons extensively and specifically trained in Intergroup Dialogue methodology
    • At Michigan, we believe that facilitation is best provided by undergraduate peers.
in dialogue participants explore
In Dialogue, Participants Explore…
  • Commonalities and differences within and between groups
  • Differences in privilege and discrimination between groups
  • Intergroup conflicts, and positive uses of conflict
  • Possibilities for alliances and coalitions between groups, and other strategies for social justice
major research questions
MAJOR RESEARCH QUESTIONS
  • DOES INTERGROUP DIALOGUE
    • INCREASE INTERGROUP UNDERSTANDING, INTERGROUP RELATIONSHIPS, AND COMMITMENT TO INTERGROUP COLLABORATION?
  • HOW DOES INTERGROUP DIALOGUE PRODUCE EFFECTS?
what the study did
WHAT THE STUDY DID
  • RANDOM ASSIGNMENT TO DIALOGUES OR CONTROL GROUPS
  • USING QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE METHODS
    • SURVEYS
    • INTERVIEWS
    • VIDEO TAPING
    • CONTENT ANALYZING FINAL PAPERS
  • ASSESSING STUDENTS
    • BEGINNING OF TERM, END OF TERM, A YEAR LATER
participants in total study and intensive dialogue sub study
PARTICIPANTS IN TOTAL STUDY AND INTENSIVE DIALOGUE SUB-STUDY

52 Dialogue Experiments (26 race, 26 gender)

Dialogue Intensive Study (10 race, 10 gender dialogues)

Dialogue (n=726)

Dialogue Intensive Study (n=247)

Within Students of Color:

38% African American

36% Asian/Asian American

21% Latino/a

5% Other

Control (n=721)

overall effects in three sets of outcomes
OVERALL EFFECTS IN THREE SETS OF OUTCOMES

Significant Effects of Dialogue

  • On 26 of 27 measures across intergroup understanding, intergroup relationships, and intergroup action
  • In both race and gender dialogues on 24 of 27 measures – on 3 significant effects only in race dialogues
  • For all 4 groups of students on 26 of 27 measures
  • Still evident a year later on 24 of 27 measures – smaller but still reliable.
collaborative action
COLLABORATIVE ACTION

PRE to POST Effect of Dialogue

Time X Condition Interaction

F(1,1349) = 50.92, p < .001, η2 = .036

PRE to 1-YR LATER Effect of Dialogue

Time X Condition Interaction

F(1,1157) = 7.70, p = .006, η2 = .007

IGD

Months

what accounts for these effects learning
WHAT ACCOUNTS FOR THESE EFFECTS? LEARNING

STUDENTS IN DIALOGUE INCREASE MORE THAN CONTROL GROUPS IN:

  • ACTIVE THINKING
  • ENGAGED LEARNING
  • CONSIDERATION OF MULTIPLE PERSPECTIVES
  • POSITIVE EMOTIONS IN INTERGROUP SETTINGS
  • POSITIVE INTERGROUP INTERACTIONS
  • IDENTITY ENGAGEMENT

AND ALL OF THESE ARE FOSTERED BY COMMUNICATION PROCESSES…..

AND THEN HELP ACCOUNT FOR IMPACT OF DIALOGUE ON THREE SETS OF OUTCOMES

what accounts for these effects communication processes
Engaging Self (α=.83)

Critical Reflection (α=.78)

“Examining the sources of my biases and assumptions.”

“Making Mistakes and reconsidering my opinions.”

“Thinking about issues that I may not have before.”

“Being able to disagree.”

“Sharing my views and experiences.”

“Asking questions that I felt I wasn’t able

to ask before.”

“Speaking openly without feeling judged.”

Learning from others (α=.86)

Alliance Building (α=.91)

“Hearing different points of view.”

“Learning from each other.”

“Hearing other students’ personal stories”

“Listening to other students’ commitment to work against injustices.”

“Talking about ways to take action on social issues.”

“Feeling a sense of hope about being able to challenge injustices.”

“Working through disagreements and conflicts.”

WHAT ACCOUNTS FOR THESE EFFECTS? COMMUNICATION PROCESSES
relevance for all of us
RELEVANCE FOR ALL OF US

CRUCIAL IMPORTANCE OF….

  • STUDENTS GETTING TO KNOW EACH OTHER PERSONALLY & NON-SUPERFICIALLY ACROSS BACKGROUNDS & CULTURES
  • HELPING THEM UNDERSTAND INDIVIDUATION IS NOT ALL THERE IS – THE IMPORTANT ROLE OF CULTURE, GROUPS, INEQUALITIES IN SOCIAL AND ORGANIZATIONAL LIFE
  • CONNECTING SUBSTANTIVE & DISCIPLINARY KNOWLEDGE TO THESE INTERCULTURAL COMPETENCIES
tabletop24
Tabletop
  • Discussion &
  • Worksheet
video25
VIDEO
  • CommonGround Video
slide26
CommonGround

History and Development

  • Response to student need for increased access to social justice education
  • Necessity to be congruent with departmental philosophy of education:
        • Peer-facilitation
        • Student-centered leadership
        • Mindfulness of power imbalances
        • Utilization of theory
        • Contributions to research
slide27
History and Development

Goals of CommonGround

  • Cultivate knowledge, insight, and awareness around social issues and intergroup relations
  • Provide an opportunity for students to talk about issues of identity, social issues, conflict and communication and to encourage further exploration
  • Recognize similarities and differences that exist both within groups and across identities
  • Foster reflection and discussion about individuals’ own identities and their intersectionality
  • Instill a capacity to continue involvements in social justice and/or social change after graduation
commonground workshops
CommonGround Workshops
  • U-M student organizations, faculty, offices and programs request and engage in workshops
  • 1.5 - 3 hour time frame
  • Topics include: identity, privilege, oppression, civic engagement, etc.
  • Why Are All the ______ Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?; The Media: Seeing is Believing; Understanding the Campus Climate; Why Don’t You Understand Me?!
structure of commonground
Structure of CommonGround
  • Workshop Facilitators
  • Student Leaders
  • Participants
  • Requestors
utilization of self authorship intercultural maturity model
Utilization of Self-Authorship & Intercultural Maturity Model

Intercultural Maturity Model -

Patricia King & Marcia Baxter Magolda (2005)

  • Development of intercultural maturity as desired college outcome
  • 3 dimensions of framework:
    • Intrapersonal
    • Interpersonal
    • Cognitive
  • Theory to Practice

Self-Authorship Model

Robert Keagan (1994)

  • Students who interpret and learn from experiences on their own engage in a mode of meaning making, called “self-authorship”
outcomes based research
Outcomes-Based Research
  • Methods
    • Student Voice
    • Surveys
    • Focus Groups
    • 1:1 Interviews
    • Emails
  • Qualitative and Quantitative
evaluation and assessment the trajectory
Evaluation and Assessment ~ The Trajectory
  • Pilot: Winter 2007 – August 2007
    • Participant Evaluation
    • Validation of CommonGround
  • Year One: Fall 2007 – Summer 2008
    • Reevaluated Participant Evaluation
    • Workshop Facilitator Reflections
    • Preliminary use of theory in research and assessment
  • Year Two: Fall 2008 – Summer 2009
    • Incorporated Intercultural Maturity, Self-Authorship as guiding forces for research interpretation. Did very limited quantitative research on facilitator impact.
    • Began the process of developing Learning Outcomes and Research Structure
    • Developed Logic Model for CommonGround
  • Year Three: Fall 2009 – Present
    • Structured and Formalized Research Project
    • Solidified Learning Goals and research Questions
    • Obtained IRB
    • Conducted Workshop facilitator focus group and analysis of transcripts.
slide34
Preliminary Research
  • Goal: Cultivate knowledge, insight, and awareness around social issues and intergroup relations
  • Facilitator: “I think my experience here also let me know about America in terms of ….social identity, so I can share with other international students to let them know more about these issues in the United States”
slide35
Preliminary Research
  • Goal: Foster reflection and discussion about individuals’ own identities and their intersectionality
  • “…CommonGround has helped me to

conceptualize a lot of my thoughts on

social identity into more concrete terms.

It has also helped me make sense of a

lot of my realities and in doing so, has

also helped me to externalize the issues

I need to externalize. I have for too

long thought that I was to blame for

the things that have happened in my

life, but am now able to see the role

that my social identities play in my

everyday realities.” – Facilitator

  • Some of what I discovered about myself

was a surprise, and very helpful for how

I see myself - Participant

slide36
Preliminary Research
  • Goal: Instill a capacity to continue involvements in social justice and/or social change after graduation
  • “I am currently in the Political Science stream, but because of this experience, I am considering pursuing a career that will allow to not only continue using my facilitation skills, but also one that will ultimately involves me pursuing a social justice issue.” --Facilitator
commonground facilitator evaluation research questions
CommonGround Facilitator Evaluation Research Questions
  • What effect does Common Ground have on learning about:
    • Social justice concepts
    • Facilitation
  • What effect does CommonGround have on student learning about:
    • Values and social identity
    • Interpersonal relationships in different settings
    • Conflict across social identities
  • How are facilitators integrating what they learn from CommonGround and applying it to their classes, personal lives and other activities?
focus group preliminary results themes
Focus Group Preliminary ResultsThemes
  • Expansion of knowledge and depth on social justice issues
    • Facilitator #1: “This program has expanded my ideas and my passion for social justice.”*
  • Greater awareness of own social identities
    • Facilitator #2: “I actually joined CommonGround because I feel like an agent (in) pretty much all (of) my identities. And one thing that was interesting for me was learning more about my target identity.”
  • Supportive Environment and Family Atmosphere
    • Facilitator #3: “I’ve never been more affirmed by a group of people in my entire life.”

*Names of participants were changed to respect and protect their confidentiality.

focus group preliminary results themes39
Focus Group Preliminary ResultsThemes
  • Feeling of burden from all the social injustices
    • Facilitator #1: “A lot of things that were brought up while I facilitated around inequalities was more than just addressing (inappropriate) language, but more so… taking action systematically. I haven’t been able to find that.”
  • Greater confidence understanding social identities in facilitation
    • Facilitator #2: “I think my experience here also let me know about America in terms of ….social identity, so I can share with other international students to let them know more about these issues in the United States”
tabletop40
Tabletop
  • Discussion &
  • Worksheet
mportfolio umich edu
Mportfolio.umich.edu

Mportfolio, an integrative learning tool, incorporates the following unique components:

  • Valuing Learning From All Aspects of LifeHelp students identify learning from all areas of their life, bridge their college experiences to other life experiences, and demonstrate how their underlying values and beliefs connect to their learning
  • Documenting Learning Beyond GraduationDevelop students' abilities to recognize "a-ha" moments in their lives and encourage them to document their knowledge, skills, and contributions beyond graduation
  • Understanding What We Know, Value, and BelieveRetrieving, reflecting, integrating, and documenting knowledge that has been gained through experience and connecting that knowledge to values, beliefs, and decision making
  • Supporting Assessment and AccountabilityStudents reflect on their learning, recognize how that learning relates to competencies, and demonstrate how those competencies inform their practice
invitation to our national intergroup dialogue institute
Invitation to our National Intergroup Dialogue Institute

The Program on Intergroup Relations hosts annual Intergroup Dialogue National Institutes for faculty and staff who wish to learn our philosophy and techniques for the purpose of creating dialogue programs on their own campuses.

  • The next National Institute will be held June 8-11, 2011 in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
  • Join us in learning about intergroup dialogue and how you might use it at your institution!
    • Participate in engaging activities commonly used in intergroup dialogue settings
    • Explore the overall dialogue framework and The Michigan Model
    • Strategize the development and support of academic and co-curricular programs
  • http://www.igr.umich.edu/about/institute
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