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Classroom Civility and Incivility

The higher education community encompasses diverse academic disciplines, as well as diverse behavioral and cultural dimensions (e.g., individualism, social hierarchy). Although the primary mission of individuals within the community may be to provide or receive quality educational experiences, the diversity of thought associated with how to create and structure these educational experiences can lead to incivility—impolite, unsociable, or offensive behavior between individuals or groups within the environment. Civility, on the other hand, involves behavior that shows a respect or regard for individuals and encourages community regardless of dissenting viewpoints. The terms civility and incivility are broadly used to communicate the propensity of individuals to tolerate and engage difference within a community; including an ability to identify the norms/values governing the community, willingness to live by ...

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