Intergroup Relations (IGR) is an educational experience about issues of social justice.
The focus of IGR is on creating understanding relationships among people from different social, economic, racial and ethnic groups. Communication skills related to careful listening and meaningful dialogue are also discussed and developed for all who participate.
Dialogue, as opposed to discussion or debate, is focused on broadening perspectives, looking for shared meaning, and building relationships. Topics include:
Race ▪ Gender ▪ Socioeconomic Status/Class ▪ Religion/Spirituality ▪ DisAbilities
One credit IGR courses are designed to prepare students to create dialogues in situations where understanding and listening are needed.
IGR@VU--INTERGROUP DIALOGUE—1-credit courses—COM 5300
Intergroup Dialogue is a collaborative program of the Center for Multicultural Affairs and the Department of Communication. Specially trained faculty and staff members facilitate each small class, limited to 12 students, and the cultural identities of participants are carefully balanced.
Each course begins with attention to the dialogic process of interaction. Readings, in class dialogue, written papers, and interactive exercises are used to guide self-exploration, highlight similarities and differences among class members, and increase understanding of how social structures and institutions function to allocate privilege and sustain societal inequities.
Most courses meet for 2 or 3 hours once a week until 14-15 class hours are reached. While most Fall courses are full, the current schedule is available at www.villanova.edu/igr. LOOK FOR SPRING CLASSES soon!
Note: Three one-credit courses can be bundled to meet the Diversity 1 requirement for CLAS students. Courses do not have to be taken in the same semester. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information
Gender: In this course, students explore the topic of gender identity and how gender discrimination is often invisible in our daily lives. Topics include masculinity and femininity, the related pressures men and women experience, images of women in the media, gendered language, and the expectations that the construct of gender asserts broadly in U.S. society and on campus. The ways in which sexual orientation intersects with gender are also introduced.
Socioeconomic Status (SES): In this course, students explore what it means to be a member of their own socioeconomic status. They also engage in dialogue with peers about their differing experiences and identities related class/SES. Class/SES are explored as fluid identities that change during one’s lifetime. What it means to experience privilege and discrimination because of one’s class identity is also explored.
Faith: This course engages students in dialogue about their faith identities and faith journeys. In collaboration with peers and facilitators, students discuss what is beautiful and challenging about being a member of one’s own religion/faith group, or not having membership to such a group. Particular attention is paid to students’ experiences of faith within our Catholic University context.
Racial Identities: : This course engages dialogue around race and identity. Students participate in conversation with peers and facilitators about the areas in which they experience privilege and discrimination because of their racial identities.
Advanced Race: A prerequisite to this class is the successful completion of IGR on Race or White Racial Identity and recommendation of the instructor. This course builds on the topics of oppression and discrimination covered in the Race and White Racial identity courses, and moves students into a performative place where they embody the communication styles associated with actual and perceived notions of racial identity.
If you are interested in these topics, visit the website for the Association for Change and Transformation (ACT) to learn about more ways to get involved in social justice at Villanova.