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Keiser University Conflict Analysis Dealing with Conflict Paper

 

The purpose of this paper is for you to analyze a specific conflict you have had or continue to have with a specific person.  Your relationship to this person may be ongoing or in the past.  You must incorporate course concepts and terminology from the text in your analysis and self-reflection.

Process

Before writing: Section I of these assignment instructions includes questions for you to think about before writing your essay.

Writing the paper: Sections II –VIII of this assignment sheet include questions for you to consider as you write about the nature of your conflict, the role of power, individual styles, assessment, personal intervention, prevention, and possible solutions to your conflict.  You may not need to answer every question in each section.  Write your analysis in paragraph form, not as short answers to each question.  The questions are to help you frame your analysis.

After writing the first draft:

Ask a classmate, friend, or some other third party to review your essay. This is a great time to utilize the OWL! The Online Writing Lab is a free and helpful tool for you to use.

Ask for suggestions about how to improve the paper or ways you might better manage the conflict.

Submitting the final draft:

After gathering feedback from the third party, write your final draft. 

Be sure to include an introduction that previews the content of your paper and a conclusion that summarizes the major concepts and describes what you have learned from writing this paper.

I. Warm-Up Questions

Please give a brief description on your relationship with the other party. 

Where and how did you two meet? How long have you known each other?

What is the current nature of your relationship?   

Do or did you live together? How long?

  • Did anyone else live with you? 
  • How would you describe your overall relationship?

How would you describe your relationship now, compared to when you first met? 

II. Nature of the Conflict  

When did the conflict start? What caused it? Was it a series of events or one event?

  • When did the conflict originate? Why did it occur?  
  • Use a metaphor to describe your conflict.

Has the nature of this conflict changed over time? If so, how? 

How do you feel about the conflict?  

How do you think the other person feels about the conflict?  

  • How does the other person feel about how you feel about conflict? 
  • How do you think the other person feels about you?  
  • What would you like to see come from this conflict?  
  • How would you like to see it resolved? What are your goals?
  • What do you think the other person thinks your goals are?  
  • Do you interfere (current or past) with what you think the other person’s goals are? If so, how?
  • Does the other person interfere (current or past) with your goals? If so, how?

Has the other done so in the past? 

Does the other realize you are interfering with his or her goals?  

Have you noticed your goals changing since the beginning of the conflict? 

  • Do you feel the other person’s goals changed since the beginning of the conflict?  
  • What do you think the other person thinks your goals are? 
  • Are there others who have become involved in your conflict? Do others feel they need to take sides in this dispute? How did they influence your decisions and behaviors? 
  • Has this conflict become destructive? Does it waver between constructive and destructive or does follow one type exclusively? Has it always been this way?
  • III. Power
  • How much power do you feel you have? 
  • How much power does the other person have?
  • Do you think the other person has more power than you? Why or why not? 
  • How do you feel the other person views your power?   
  • How do you think your power affects the conflict?  
  • How do you think the other person’s power affects the relationship?  
  • What qualities do you feel you have that the other values?
  • What qualities do you value about the other person?
  • Has this conflict considerably altered your daily life with the other? If so, how?
  • Do you think that the other will agree with you regarding who has the power? 
  • What do you depend on from the other person?  
  • What does the other person depend on you for?  
  • Does the other person ever feel threatened by you? Do you think you threaten the other person?
  • Who do you think has more power?  
  • Who does the other person think has more power?

IV. Styles

What specific choices do you make in the conflict? 

What individual conflict styles do you use? 

  • Avoidance—minimize open discussion of the conflict
  • Competition—one person wins, the other person loses
  • Compromise—you and the other person give something up in order to reach an agreement
  • Collaboration—working together to find solutions that benefit both parties
  • Accommodation—avoid asserting one’s own needs and preferring to cooperate
  • Does your style vary with the situation? Why? How?
  • What is the other’s style of conflict?
  • Avoidance—minimize open discussion of the conflict
  • Competition—one person wins, the other person loses
  • Compromise—you and the other person give something up in order to reach an agreement
  • Collaboration—working together to find solutions that benefit both parties
  • Accommodation—avoid asserting one’s own needs and preferring to cooperate
  • Does the other’s style vary? Why? How?
  •  What tactics does the other person use? 
  • What do you or the other person do to keep the conflict going?

Do you or the other person suggest solutions?  If so, what are they? Are the solutions followed through with? How? Why or why not?

What nonverbal behavior do you notice in the other during a conflict?  

If you notice a behavior change, does that influence your conflict style? 

  • What role do gender differences play, if any, in your conflict?
  • Does culture influence the way you or the other party address conflict? In what ways?

Do you preplan your choices of words and actions during a conflict, or are you more spontaneous?  

Do you feel the other person preplans their word or actions? 

  1. Do you or your partner ever start conflicts deliberately? How and why?  
  2. How will you handle the conflict if it is not resolved?  
  3. Is there anything that you’d like to say or do but haven’t? Why or why not?
  4. V. Assessment
  5. Is the conflict repetitive?  If so, how? How much time has been spent trying to solve the conflict?  

Did you think that the conflict could be changed? 

  • What would you like to see happen?
  • How might the situation have been handled better?

Did you try to change your behavior in any way? Who or what influenced this?

  1. Did the other person change his or her behavior? Who or what influenced this? Why do you think this happened?  
  2. Do your conflicts ever carry over into other aspects of your life? In what ways?
  3. Does this dispute carry over into other aspects of the other person’s life? 
  4. Are other members of your household ever drawn into your conflicts? How? How do they feel about this? 
  5. Has there ever been a conflict that has not been resolved in the earlier stages of the relationship? Why not? What was its impact?  
  • What differences have you noticed in the other person since your conflict? 
  • What differences in yourself have you noticed since your conflict began?
  • How would you like to see your conflict resolved? Do you think it will be resolved this way? 
  • What do you think will happen to the relationship in the future? 
  • VI. Personal Intervention
  • How do you express your anger?  
  • How does the other person express their anger? 
  • How could you manage your anger better?  (i.e. alternatives)  
  • How could the other person manage anger better? 
  • What other changes, if any, would you like to make in your behavior? What would you like to change about the other? 
  • Do you feel comfortable saying how you really feel? Do you share your true feelings?  What about the other person?
  • VII. Solutions, Forgiveness and Reconciliation
  • Have attempted solutions become part of the problem? How? Why or why not? 

Can you think of any solutions that have not been tried? Would you like to try any of these? What additional resources might you need? 

Do you feel you have forgiven the other party? Why or why not?

Have you sought forgiveness for your role in the conflict? Why or why not?

  • Have you reconciled your relationship? Why or why not?
  • Is reconciliation always part of forgiveness?
  • Do you believe there is something you could do to reconcile this relationship? What is it? How would you go about it? Would it make you happy to do this?
  • Are you satisfied with the current outcome or do you wish a better solution could be found?
  • VIII. Prevention
  • Do you think this conflict could have been prevented? If so, how?
  • How might future conflicts be prevented?
  • Would a third party be helpful or has a third party been helpful?
  • What have you learned from your history with this conflict?
  • What relationship and identity issues do you have in this conflict?  Are they similar to issues you have in other conflicts?  How might you address these?
  • What communication skills might help you better manage conflict in the future? 
  • Assignment Requirements
  • This is not your Grading Grid, only a checklist. 
  • Identify your own conflict style and use one of your relationships to make a personal application of the concepts covered in this class using the above questions for reference. You should plan to answer questions from each of the above sections.

Use a 10 or 12 pt Arial or Times New Roman Font· Double-space paper

Minimum of 1200 words. No more than 2,000 words

Minimum of four (4) cited sources

  • Use APA format and parenthetical citations right after cited material
  • Make sure your name is on your paper
  • The paper should contain a title page, introduction paragraph, a body(that addresses the above sections), a conclusion paragraph, and a separate references page.

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