• A qualitative approach to understanding the everyday difference between acquaintanceship and friendship: how western organizational members discriminate these concepts through communicative interaction

      Hines, Bobby A. (2006-05)
      Stewart & Bennett posited the term 'friend, ' used by members of U.S. American culture, 'may refer to anyone from a passing acquaintance to a lifetime intimate' (p. 100-101). Although American use of the term illustrates broad applicability as acceptable, Americans describe the label as having different meanings depending on those to whom they apply it. This qualitative research study utilizes narrative inquiry to gain a better understanding of the everyday lived experience of U.S. American organizational members' friendships and acquaintanceships within the organizational setting and how they perceive the way they discern between friends and acquaintances inside an organization in comparison to those interpersonal relationships in their everyday social world. Through thematic analysis of capta from the conversational interviews of seven co-researchers, two themes arose: American organizational members have difficulty identifying 'friend, ' and differentiate 'friend' from 'organizational friend' by whether the relationship is primarily based in an infra or supra-contextual setting.
    • Questing for friendship: a conversation analysis of Dungeons and Dragons

      Greenstreet, Brandon J. (2012-05)
      This study addresses the doing, of friendship, the dynamic, continuous, unpredictable and emergent process of relating, as described by the Dialectics of Friendship. Examining, segments of the talk among a small group of male friends playing, the role-playing game Dungeons and Dragons using the approach of conversation analysis, this study sought to determine the ways in which these friendship dialectics are evident in their utterance by utterance micro-level talk-in-interaction. The resources and practices they employ in interactionally achieving a number of different conversational actions as their talk unfolds were revealed and can be understood or interpreted as enactments of one or more of the contradictory poles of six dialectics, demonstrating empirically dialectical contradictions, the tensions between their polarities, and their interdependence and interaction with other dialectics arises emergently out of talk-in-interaction, and is taken up and negotiated by participants.
    • Reading Comprehension Strategies In Children With High-Functioning Autism: A Social Constructivist Perspective

      Cotter, June Ann; Richey, Jean (2011)
      Individuals with autism see the world, by definition of the diagnosis, in a very different way than the typical student. Communication, both verbal and non-verbal, is a defining characteristic of this disability. Students with autism both can and need to learn to comprehend when reading to be successful in school and in life. This study evaluated the reading comprehension abilities of three students with autism and using a strength-based approach targeting comprehension strategies. These strategies also appear to have increased the students' communication skills. All participants were medically or educationally diagnosed with autism. All had an educationally-defined label of autism and had been identified as having difficulty with reading comprehension. The study is presented as a case study with limited participants. The author investigated the reading comprehension abilities of each student and through direct instruction provided support for the skills the student already possessed. Additional skills were then introduced thereby increasing the students' abilities to comprehend. An additional effect of increasing student personal communication skills was also noted.
    • Relationship maintenance, democratic decision making, and decision agreement

      Tucker, Jenna M.; Sager, Kevin L.; Richey, Jean; Taylor, Karen (2012-05)
      Relationship maintenance uses different strategies to maintain a relationship at the desired level of intimacy. Democratic decision making is a practice through which each individual has equal rights in the decision-making process. The present study investigated connections among two areas of research. In particular, this study examined the correlations among relationship maintenance behaviors, democratic decision making, and decision agreement. Both hypotheses in the study were supported, which suggests relationship maintenance promotes democratic decision making, which in turn promotes decision agreement.
    • Risk and crisis communication: coordinating for a northern environment

      Kezer, Patrick S. (2006-05)
      With the destruction of 9-11, and more recently the Asian Tsunami and Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, came an urgency for communities across the US to be better prepared for such events. Human-caused and natural disasters are the principal force that crisis managers must face when planning, coordinating, and preparing for a crisis. This research examines the lived experience of crisis managers in the Fairbanks North Star Borough (FNSB) as they engage in the process of planning coordinated responses to such crises. The study employs conversational interviewing as method and follows a narrative methodology. The results of the study suggest that crisis managers in the FNSB are a cohesive group who depend on mutual aid in the event of crises, and understand that there are boundaries to their response, yet are confident in their abilities. They respond to such events following a hierarchical command structure similar to that of the military. Their coordinated efforts are regulated by outside agencies and include interacting with the media on a routine basis.
    • Russian women's experience of friendship: examining the application of American theories

      Dukhovskaya, Elisaveta N. (2002-05)
      This qualitative exploratory study examined Russian women's lived experience of their friendships with other Russian women, and the applicability of American theories of interpersonal relationships and friendship in interpreting that experiencing. The relational dialectic approach to friendship served as the theoretical framework of this study. The capta obtained by means of conversational interviewing of five Russian women were analyzed thematically. Interpreting the women's experience using relational dialectics produced four themes involving three dialectics. Two more dialectics observed in American friendships, certainty/uncertainty and affection/instrumentality, were not evident in interpreting the friendship experiences of these women. Analysis also provided insight on cultural similarities and differences between Russian women and American in the definition of friendship. Implications for future research considering the culture and the relational dialectics of friendship were noted.
    • Schools in rural Alaska with higher rates of student achievement: a search for positive deviance in education

      Hill, Melissa M.; Jacobsen, Gary; Adams, Barbara; Richey, Jean; Barnhardt, Ray (2017-05)
      This study sought to identify schools in rural Alaska with higher rates of student achievement and study what factors contribute to that success. Alaska Native students make up a large majority of the students attending school in small remote villages across the state. Data, however, have shown that Alaska Native students constantly perform lower than any other demographic group on every subject level and lower at every grade level when tested using state assessments. This study begins with a journey to understand the complexity of the problems that affect schooling in rural Alaska, ranging from teacher turnover to school district size and oversight. However, it is important to examine this current challenge by examining the history of education and how that history has affected Alaska Native people today. To identify schools in rural Alaska with higher rates of student achievement, a binary variable was used to determine positive deviance. Data analysis drew on academic achievement of each school as measured by the 5-year average score of the school in three subjects: Reading, Mathematics and Writing. While the results did not yield a case study for positive deviance, the findings and conclusion, using a critical race theory lens question whether schools today, intentionally or unintentionally, are still modeled after the same framework and operate in the same fashion as they did when they were intended to assimilate Alaska Natives to become better citizens. Using an advocacy worldview, this study draws upon the unchallenged truth that schools in rural Alaska may never perform as a collective as well as or better than their urban counterparts under this model.
    • Sense versus sentiment: emergent persuasive strategies of non-profit organizations in dichotomous economic climates

      Miller, Alexis S. (2011-05)
      This study seeks to explore the rhetoric employed by the United Way in contrasting economic contexts. With a theoretical framework of Aristotle's Theory of Rhetoric, this study employs rhetorical criticism. Interpretation of results suggests that pathos is most prevalent in crisis conditions, such as a recession, whereas logos is most prevalent under stable economic circumstances. Initial conclusions drawn from the study highlight the importance of community supportiveness appeals in crisis conditions.
    • The social construction of dream sharing: disclosure between intimate partners

      Scaman, Michelle (2005-05)
      Psychology thus far has been the leading discipline in the study of dreams and supposes dreams are intrapersonal. Through the theoretical lens of Social Construction of Reality and the framework of self-disclosure, this study focuses on how intimate couples share dreams as a communicative process. Social Construction of Reality is the creation, maintenance, and transformation of reality through social interaction (Deetz, 1982). Crotty (1998) states that social construction involves 'knowledge' and 'meaningful reality' that is based on 'human practices, being constructed in and of interaction between human beings and their world' (p. 42). This social construction of 'meaningful reality' provides the basis for this study. The method of gathering data included a focus group of five participants followed by narrative or conversational interviews with six individual participants. The focus group was guided by the work of Morgan (1997) and Stewart (1990) and the narrative interviews were based on the work of Kvale (1996) and Mishler (1991). Together the Review of the Literature and methodology sections provide a foundation for research on the way relationship is constituted through communicative dialogue of dream sharing. Three primary themes emerged from analysis of the Human Science capta: (1) relational turning points, (2) mutuality, and (3) dream dialectics.
    • The social construction of formal and informal expectations of Army officers' wives

      O'Donnell, Lauren C. (2003-05)
      This research study utilizes qualitative narrative analysis to better understand the lived experience of United States Army officers' wives, particularly in regard to the socially constructed expectations for officers' wives to assume traditional women's roles. The study is undertaken from the epistemology of Constructionism and the theoretical perspective of the social construction of reality. Narrative interviews with eight Army officers' wives revealed one principal emergent theme, labeled "Noblesse Oblige," as well as several sub-themes encompassing aspects of officer's rank and position as social status, perceived expectations of officers' wives and the resulting reactions and actions, and role preservation of officers' wives. The experiential reality of contemporary Army officers' wives is fraught with tension over the acceptance of traditional women's roles, socially constructed perceptions of status, and issues of identity as they relate to a marital relationship.
    • The social construction of health crisis in intimate relational communication

      Van Haastert, Christen Colette (2006-05)
      For women who have dealt with health crises, intimate relationships are the single most significant resource for coming to understand how life is affected by such occurrences. Health crises are times of reconstitution of self and relationships (Lorber, 1997). The present research began in Human Science, the epistemology of Constructionism, the theory of Social Construction of Reality, and used Narrative Inquiry and conversational interviewing to produce an understanding of women's lived experience of health crisis in intimate relationships. This research discusses the creation of the meanings of self, other, and relationship for women who have experienced health crisis. During analysis, three themes emerged: 'sick of being sick, ' 'it's not a big deal, ' and 'I need empathy!' This study has demonstrated that the experience of health crisis has significant effects on the lived experience of women in North American culture.
    • The social construction of self in fan cultures: creating self identity in fan communities

      Hazlett, Susan Diane; McWherter, Pamela; Brown, Jin; Sheane, Sue (2002-05)
      Star Trek fans have long been portrayed in the media as overweight women and geeky men. This study takes a closer look at Star Trek fans and their lived experience. Through conversational interviewing, the nature of the reality experienced in fandom is explored and implications for the relationship between the reality shared by participants in everyday life and the reality shared by fandom is sought. The analysis, which was carried out throughout the interview process, provided insights into the realities experienced by fans.
    • Socialization experiences of Russian employees at the University of Alaska Fairbanks: cultural approach

      Markova, Elena P. (2004-05)
      This qualitative exploratory study examines Russian employees' lived experiences at the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) and the influence UAF culture has on the communicative socialization process. Like other international workers employed at various positions in American universities, Russian employees, especially Research and Teaching assistants, may experience difficulty in terms of language, culture, training, in terms of adapting to American culture, specifically American academic culture, to succeed in their jobs. The literature review for this study includes theoretical perspectives from intercultural communication, organizational communication, and the social construction of reality. Russian employees participate in in-depth narrative interviews about their communication experiences of socialization at U AF. Four repetitive themes emerge: (1) vulnerable self; (2) competition; (3) freedom; and (4) informality. Analysis also provides insight on cultural similarities and differences between Russians and Americans in their interactions at UAF, and on an interpersonal level. Implications for future research in relation to how cultural similarities and differences are revealed in a communication process between Russian graduate and professional students and their American counterparts, and how these similarities and differences affect their everyday interactions
    • Something missing in our marriage: emotional responses to marital conflict in Chinese-American couples

      Soo, Pikha Doobie (2005-05)
      There is significant literature regarding marital conflict for couples of the same cultural background, but few studies focus on Chinese-American couples, which are becoming increasingly common. The purpose of this research is twofold. The first goal is to begin to understand the lived experience of marital conflict for Chinese women married to American men. The second goal is to better understand these Chinese women's responses to such conflicts, in particular their emotional responses, and their choices for dealing with these conflicts. Conversational interviewing and narratives analysis were employed in this qualitative research. Six Chinese women who were not raised in the US and who are married to American men participated in this study. Six primary themes emerged from the narratives. The Chinese women: 1) have unique, individual reasons for marrying American men; 2) do not experience language differences as a source of conflict in their intercultural marriages; 3) have difficulty accepting and adjusting to what they see as independence on the part of their American husbands; 4) experience qi liang ... in their intercultural marriages; 5) experience anger in their intercultural marriages; and 6) use emotion-linked strategies to elicit attention from their husbands. It would be interesting to study the perspective of the American men in these intercultural relationships, and to compare and contrast their perceptions of the sources of conflict. Future research should examine other Asian women, for there are significant numbers of women from Korea and Japan now marrying American men.
    • Speaking of change: a conversation analysis of organizational change in a business meeting

      Ludwig, Erik J.; Arundale, Robert B.; DeCaro, Peter A.; Shoaps, Robyn A. (2014-05)
      Current theories of communication in human organizations conceptualize them as entities that are created, maintained, and changed in the everyday discourse among the individuals who comprise them. In arguing this general perspective, however, these theories do not come to grips with how the processes of creating, maintaining, and changing are actually implemented in the actual day-to-day talk that occurs in organizations. This study utilized an abstract characterization of episodic and continuous change in organizations to inform a single-case, conversation analytic investigation of the talk-in-interaction in a recording of business meeting in a small company. The analysis revealed that features of both episodic and continuous change were evident or "hearable" in the talk, in particular the active restructuring of the organizational chart for one division of the company. These changes were evident both in the explicit discussion, as well as in key internal features of the talk such as shifts in the organization of turntaking. The analysis makes evident that current theorizing in organizational communication in general, and in organizational change in particular, needs to be amended in order to more directly link abstract generalizations about change to the details of how it is achieved in everyday talk.
    • Student diversity and curriculum in the basic public speaking course: implications for creating an advanced public speaking course

      Sehnert, Shannon E.; McWherter, P.; Brown, J.; Arundale, R. (2001-05)
      This research study employs qualitative narrative analysis in order to develop an understanding of the lived experience of Graduate Teaching Assistants teaching the basic public speaking course at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Interviews with Graduate Teaching Assistants reveal three themes. First, it is important to recognize and address each student's abilities and experience as unique. Second, based on individual students' abilities and experience, they should be allowed to select and define their own speaking situations and goals. Finally, students must have a comfortable and collaborative environment in which to experiment, practice, and respond to the choices made by their classmates. In a subsequent focus group interview, the co-researchers responded to a published course description for an advanced public speaking course. Co-researchers identified specific aspects of the advanced course description as addressing the emergent themes, providing implications for creating an advanced public speaking course at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.
    • Survey Research On The Relationship Between Immediacy Behaviors, Communication Competency, And Philanthropic Success

      Drygas, Emily Cameron; Cooper, Christine (2008)
      In this study, 124 Alaskan-based development professionals responded to a questionnaire concerning their perceived communicative competency and their self-reported immediacy behaviors in relation to fund-raising success. Several key findings resulted. First, in relation to the role of communication competency, this study suggests that fund-raising success is driven by the donor, rather than the fund-raising professional's communication competency. Second, the study found that successful fund-raising professionals have higher levels of verbal and non-verbal immediacy behaviors (when compared to non-successful fundraisers). Third, this study finds that development professionals who work in the geographic region of Northern Alaska use less verbal immediacy behaviors than those development professionals who represent regions in south-central, southeast, interior, and statewide districts. Finally, the demographics presented in this study support the priority need for Alaskan fundraisers to continue to grow their donor base since only 14% of the respondents reported that they are reliant on face-to-face meetings with donors for gifts in the range of $18,000--$300,000. This can be attributed to the "newness" of philanthropic work in Alaska and highlights the incredible growth potential for this field in the future.
    • Teaching adolescents conflict management skills

      DeLong, Debra M. (2011-05)
      In response to a parents request a workshop to teach a conflict management workshop to high school students was created. A pre-post test design to assess the effectiveness of the workshop was used, with the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument as the measurement. Responses were available for 76 students who were evenly divided between females and males. Overall preferences for using conflict styles did not show a statistically significant change; however, preferences for individual styles did change, with competition showing a statistically significant difference.
    • Teaching conflict management: active and traditional learning approaches in a group communication course

      Welborn, Rhonda D. (2007-05)
      The vital role of effective groups within modern organizations requires attention to the dynamics of group communication, specifically conflict management. The first context in which most individuals learn group communication skills is in the university classroom. Sims (2006) asserts that the established literature examining approaches to teaching has convinced most scholars that the student's classroom experience must advance beyond the traditional lecture format, to more interactive student involvement. This study investigated the hypothesis that active learning would result in higher perceptions of self-efficacy in students' group conflict management than would traditional lecture instruction. This study also explores issues associated with differences in instructional methods, as well as change in self-efficacy across time periods. University students in a group communication course who received either active learning or lecture based instruction in group conflict management voluntarily completed a conflict communication self-efficacy measure, and two conflict management measures. The analyses indicated that self-efficacy did increase significantly across time periods, however, no evidence was found of a difference between instructional methods. Measurement issues, the importance of a manipulation check, implications of the findings, and suggestions for future research are discussed.
    • TEST College of Rural and Community Development 9/25/17

      CHISUM (2017-09)
      TEST College of Rural and Community Development 9/25/17