The conflict resolution behaviors of occupational therapy students as a function of the personality types, demographic characteristics and contextual factors

Belkis Landa-Gonzalez, Florida International University


Interpersonal conflicts have the potential for detrimental consequences if not managed successfully. Understanding the factors that contribute to conflict resolution has implications for interpersonal relationships and the workplace. Researchers have suggested that personality plays an important and predictable role in conflict resolution behaviors (Chanin & Schneer, 1984; Kilmann & Thomas, 1975; Mills, Robey & Smith, 1985). However, other investigators have contended that contextual factors are important contributors in triggering the behavioral responses (Shoda & Mischel, 2000; Mischel & Shoda, 1995). The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships among personality types, demographic characteristics and contextual factors on the conflict resolution behaviors reported by graduate occupational therapy students (n = 125). ^ The study design was correlational. The Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and the Thomas-Kilmann (MODE) Instrument were used to establish the personality types and the context independent conflict resolution behaviors respectively. The effects of contextual factors of task vs. relationship and power were measured with the Conflict Case Scenarios Questionnaire (CCSQ). One-way ANOVA and linear regression procedures were used to test the relationships between personality types and demographic characteristics with the context independent conflict behaviors. Chi-Square procedures of the personality types by contextual conditions ascertained the effects of contexts in modifying the resolution modes. Descriptive statistics established a profile of the sample. ^ The results of the hypotheses tests revealed significant relationships between the personality types of feeling-thinking and sensing-intuition with the conflict resolution behaviors. The contextual attributes of task vs. relationship orientation and of peer vs. supervisor relationships were shown to modify the conflict behaviors. Furthermore, demographic characteristics of age, gender, GPA and educational background were shown to have an effect on the conflict resolution behaviors. The knowledge gained has implications for students' training, specifically understanding their styles and use of effective conflict resolution strategies. It also contributes to the knowledge on management approaches and interpersonal competencies and how this might facilitate the students' transition to the clinical role. ^

Subject Area

Health Sciences, Education|Health Sciences, Rehabilitation and Therapy|Education, Higher

Recommended Citation

Belkis Landa-Gonzalez, "The conflict resolution behaviors of occupational therapy students as a function of the personality types, demographic characteristics and contextual factors" (January 1, 2005). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. Paper AAI3206026.

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