Tolerance and Education

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Claire Chapin
If you wish to use any of my responses during class, I do not mind if you use my name.
In chapter 6, Vogt states, “Because the relation of education to tolerance is very complex, successful educational efforts are very simple or focused” (Vogt 203). His two main strategies for increasing toleration that he recommends instructors involve personality and cognitive development as well as utilizing intergroup contact and direct instruction. In terms of personality and cognitive development, he believes that there are several connections between education and tolerance and rather than attempt to make students tolerant of everything all at once, it is better to work on one aspect of tolerance at a time and hope that “fixing one thing will have a sort of modeling effect; what students learn through one process about a particular sort of tolerance may provide a pattern of learning for other educational processes and kinds of tolerance” (Vogt 204). When discussing personality and cognitive development, Vogt expresses that in order to teach tolerance, educators simply need to make small changes to their goal of furthering students’ development such as “encouraging open-mindedness and discouraging dogmatism” (Vogt 204). He explains how instructors can utilize intergroup contact through the example that when students sit in a cafeteria, they tend to sit with members of their same racial group, which produces segregation. Students do not particularly do this because they are racist but rather because they are avoiding being a minority at the table. The strong desire to not be a minority goes further than just race; students may also avoid groups of people who are of the opposite gender or have different social labels (i.e.: “athletes” and “musicians”) than them. Vogt states on page 206, “the main way to eliminate such self-segregation is to assign seats”.

A positive significant thing I learned from completing the Discomfort Zone came from working with a...
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