A Typology of Critical Incidents in Intergroup Dialogue Groups

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Abstract

Latent semantic analysis (Landauer & Dumais, 1997) was used to derive pairwise similarity ratings based on the content of 102 critical incidents (CIs) identified by participants in four intergroup dialogues. The resulting similarity matrix was then analyzed with cluster analysis to identify the content themes of these CIs. The cluster analysis identified three superordinate clusters and nine content themes in the CIs. The three superordinate clusters were labeled: Cognitive, Affective, and Consciousness Raising change processes. The three Cognitive change processes were labeled: (1) Talking At, (2) Talking With, and (3) Facilitating the Conversation. The three Affective change processes were labeled: (1) Working Toward Acceptance, (2) Learning from Others' Feelings and Experiences, and (3) Reflection on Felt Differences. The three Consciousness Raising change processes were labeled: (1) Having Eyes Opened, (2) Realizations about People, and (3) Personal Engagement. Similarities and differences between these change processes and change processes described in the group counseling literature are discussed.

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