Resolving Community Conflicts

Community Conflicts

Differences of opinion can occur in a diverse academic and artistic community. SAIC offers a variety of tools for conflict resolution to help students take responsibility for managing their conflicts early and respectfully. We also have staff ready to assist should students want support. For a quick overview of SAIC’s Conflict Resolution options, check out this guide.

Below you can find information about the different ways that you can resolve conflicts based on your personal comfort and the nature of the situation. For more serious situations or if you are uncomfortable navigating a situation on their own, we encourage you to reach out for help and discuss your options.

If you’re looking for help navigating a conflict:

Other offices are here to help too! For additional support, use the following links if your conflict involves one of these areas.

Disability Diversity and Inclusion Discrimination and Harassment

Approaches to Conflict Resolution

The first step in managing many conflicts is for students to attempt to resolve their issues directly. This can help students resolve a situation without escalating it. It works best when students feel comfortable navigating the conflict on their own and the conflict isn't about a more serious issue like a potential policy violation or safety concern. Some basic ideas for resolving conflict on your own include:

  • Be Direct. Clearly communicate your concerns.
  • Speak in Person. Talk it out; don’t just send a text or email.
  • Talk About the Behavior, Not the Person. Talk about your concerns with the issue; don’t just criticize the other person.
  • Assume the Best. Give the other person the benefit of the doubt and assume there may be an explanation for the problem.

Students often want to resolve conflicts on their own, but want advice and feedback from someone who isn’t involved in the conflict. Students may meet with a staff member to help them talk through the conflict and navigate it independently. Staff can work with students to identify strategies for having difficult conversations.

Students may want more direct assistance in navigating a conflict. Staff members may facilitate a communication process between students. This approach works best when students want to have a dialogue about the conflict, but may not feel comfortable doing so on their own.