Diversity, Difference, and Contact in Educational Settings: Understanding the Ecological Factors Contributing to Positive Intergroup Relations

Francois, Amir, Education - Curry School of Education, University of Virginia
Williams, Joanna, Curry School of Education, University of Virginia

The goal of the present work is to understand how aspects of diversity and difference within school environments contribute to the promotion of positive intergroup relations and the support of healthy social climates. This dissertation follows the requirements of the manuscript-style dissertation option, as defined in the Curry School of Education Ph.D. Dissertation Manual (2010) and the Description of the Manuscript Style Dissertation Guidelines (2013). The manuscript-style dissertation option calls for students to submit an introduction (or linking document) describing the conceptual and theoretical linkages among all three manuscripts and three first-authored completed papers (one submitted and two submission-ready). In adherence with these guidelines, I am the first author on all three of the included studies. Additionally, Study 1 is completed and will be submitted to Group Processes & Intergroup Relations, and Study 2 is complete and is under review at the Journal of Teacher Education.
All three studies are conceptually related while each making their own unique contribution to the field. The remainder of this proposal contains: 1) the rationale for and framework linking the three studies described in this proposal; 2) Study 1, Interracial Friendliness and Conflict in American High Schools: The Role of Structural Features, Perceptions of Climate, and Opportunity for Contact; 3) Study 2, Pre-service Teachers’ Multicultural Attitudes and Efficacy: The Differential Role of Individual, Interpersonal, and Training Experiences; 4) Study 3, Intergroup Contact Effects on Pre-service Teachers: Ethnic Identity and Social Cognitive Mediators of Multicultural Competence.

PHD (Doctor of Philosophy)
intergroup contact, diversity, intergroup relations, teacher education, schools
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