Principal Investigator: Carolyn Gentle-Genitty, Assistant Professor, IU School of Social Work, IUPUI
Co-principal Investigators: Khadija Khaja, Associate Professor; and Jeffry Thigpen, Associate Professor, IU School of Social Work, IUPUI
Project Title: Intergroup Dialogue in Social Work
Funding Level: $15,000
This proposal aims to examine the effects of intergroup dialogue in social work. It aims to increase faculty knowledge so they can model and improve students’ skills in communicating about subjects that may be difficult to talk about by participating in intergroup dialogue. Faculty will infuse the 4-stage IGD model in five Bachelor of Social Work courses that also represent undergraduate courses. This project will be implemented in the 2015-2016 academic year. During this phase, we will reorganize and prepare syllabi for selected social work courses to include IGD 4stage principles. A part of this work is the determination of how the IGD model will be infused in the courses, selection of topics, categorization of social identities, and student composition and proportion. In Fall of 2015 we will identify and implement the IGD model in four consecutive weeks. For the assessment phase of the project a pretest will be administered to establish students’ empathy, awareness of social inequality, and capacity to engage in dialogue and communication regarding difference prior to implementing the IGD model. The pre-test will also be used to assess equivalency of groups on these constructs. Following implementation of the IGD model, a posttest will be administered to determine if students exposed to the IGD model demonstrate higher levels of empathy, increased awareness of social inequality, and a greater capacity to engage in dialogue and communication regarding difference than students in the comparison group. Constructs of empathy, awareness of social inequality, capacity to engage in intergroup dialogue will be measured via a modified version of the set of surveys developed by the Multi-University Intergroup Dialogue Research Group (MIGR, n.d.).