World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Sensitivity training

Article Id: WHEBN0005885793
Reproduction Date:

Title: Sensitivity training  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Psychotherapy, National Training Laboratories, Gail Jefferson, Multiculturalism, Rational behavior therapy
Collection: Multiculturalism, Psychotherapy
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Sensitivity training

Sensitivity training

Sensitivity training is a form of training with the goal of making people more aware of their own prejudices and more sensitive to others.

According to his biographer, National Training Laboratories in Bethel, Maine in 1947. Kurt Lewin, who met Eric Trist in 1933, influenced the work of the London, England, United Kingdom Tavistock Clinic, both in its work with soldiers during the second world war and in its later work with the Journal Human Relations jointly founded by a partnership of the Tavistock Institute and Lewin's group at MIT.

During World War II, Psychologists like Carl Rogers in the USA and William Sargant, John Rawlings Rees, and Eric Trist in Britain were used by the military to help soldiers deal with traumatic stress disorders (then known as shell shock). This work, which required service to large numbers of patients by a small number of therapists and necessarily emphasized rapidity and effectiveness helped spur the development of group therapy as a treatment technique. Rogers and others evolved their work into new forms including encounter groups designed for persons who were not diagnosably ill but who were recognized to have widespread problems associated with isolation from others common in American society. Other leaders in the development of encounter groups, including Will Schutz, worked at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California.

Meanwhile, Training Groups or T-Groups were being developed at the National Training Labs, now part of the National Education Association. Over time the techniques of T-Groups and Encounter Groups have merged and divided and splintered into specialized topics, seeking to promote sensitivity to others perceived as different and seemingly losing some of their original focus on self-exploration as a means to understanding and improving relations with others in a more general sense.


The nature of modern sensitivity training appears to be in some dispute. Its modern critics portray its origins and function in negative terms. Others view the approach as benignly beneficial in many of its historical and contemporary implementations.

According to its critics, sensitivity training involves the use of psychological techniques with groups that its critics, such as G. Edward Griffin, claim are often identical to brainwashing tactics. Critics believe these techniques are unethical.

Documentaries critical of the concept, have been produced by

See also

External links

  • More on Encounter Groups
  • More on T-Groups
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.