Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology



First Advisor

Gary Stoner


Violence refers to any act or behavior that causes harm (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], 2018), and is considered a serious public health issue. Violence puts a burden on individuals, families, and communities, which in turn cause physical and psychological damage. Kingian Nonviolence Conflict Reconciliation Program (Kingian Nonviolence) is an introductory program that serves to address the root causal conditions of violence within oneself and the greater community. Kingian Nonviolence operates on the principle that nonviolence is the only antidote for violence. Core concepts discussed in Kingian Nonviolence include: violence, nonviolence versus non(-hyphen)violence, compassion, values, conflict, conflict resolution, passages from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., social change, and the Six Principles of Nonviolence (LaFayette & Jehnsen, 1995).

This present study seeks to investigate the Kingian Nonviolence program’s ability to help decrease rates of violence and promote interest in social justice work with high school students, as well as improve their overall social, cultural, and emotional learning. A pretest/posttest, quasi-experimental, mixed method design that included four one-month follow-up focus groups was conducted to evaluate Kingian Nonviolence. This mixed-methods approach will contribute to the field of school psychology because of its emphasis on introducing nonviolence, addressing and preventing youth violence, and its contribution to improving adolescents’ cultural, social, and emotional development. The goal of this study is to provide further evidence that Kingian Nonviolence can help prevent violence and foster social emotional learning. Another goal of this study is to introduce the term cultural and emotional learning.



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