Honors Program

University Honors

Date of Award

5-2014

Thesis Professor(s)

Martha M. Michieka

Thesis Professor Department

Literature and Language

Thesis Reader(s)

Katrina M. Heil, John M. Rankin

Abstract

Studies of mixed-gender conversation have established that the gender of speakers plays a role in talking power, conversational dominance, topic control, and perception of the speaker’s communicative ability. The purpose of this study was to expand upon previous research of interruption by examining its function and frequency in conversation among peers. While previous research in this area has focused on interruption in the workplace or the home, this research examines its place in mixed-gender conversation between university students. Participants in this study were recorded in group conversation and the transcription was later analyzed for general trends of interruption with relation to each gender. From these results, it was concluded that while men and women interrupt each other in different ways, both genders interrupt frequently and exercise control over the floor. We hypothesize that greater awareness of the patterns of interruption and conversational dominance between genders will improve the inclusion of all speakers in discussion and topic development.

Document Type

Honors Thesis - Withheld

Copyright

Copyright by the authors.

Included in

Linguistics Commons

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