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Peer mediation; Conflict management; College students


Mediation is a non-adversarial method of resolving conflict through the use a trained third party in a structured process. This study measured college students' perception of satisfaction/resolution of conflicts with and without the presence of a trained peer mediator. Subjects wrote "scripts" of a recent conflict in which they were involved. Subjects also completed pertinence and intensity ratings of conflict areas on a Likert-type questionnaire. Conflict areas were limited to commonly experienced issues such as broken promises, annoyance, and illegitimate demands. Using the results, thirty-two subjects were paired and assigned scenarios to role play in conflict dyads. In experimental group dyads, mediators used a conflict resolution process that explores disputants perceptions and feelings, checks for understanding, and generates solutions. The control group attempted resolution of the conflict without assistance; mediators were present as observers only. Subjects then completed a satisfaction/resolution survey. Compared to the control group, subjects in the experimental group were more satisfied with the outcome (p < 0.05). In the pertinence and intensity of conflict categories measure, a gender main effect was observed for annoyance, criticism, and feeling ignored, with women rating these as more intense.

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Sociology Commons



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