International Studies (B.A.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Darin H. Van Tassell


Given the rise in efforts to resolve race issues in American communities and ethnic conflicts internationally through open communication techniques, I examine ways that these efforts can be carried out more effectively by analyzing the structure of dialogue centered on race at a large university in a rural area of the Southeast. For that purpose, survey data was collected from students before and after they attended an open forum about race and race relations on their campus to determine the impact of the forum on students' perceptions and attitudes regarding race in their community. In addition, I draw from two specific examples of intergroup dialogue to illustrate how communication methods employed in various communities facing conflicts impacted the conflict resolution process. Based on this research, I argue for the development of an improved model to facilitate difficult discussions surrounding conflicts based on race and ethnicity.