Dr. Courtney N. Wright is Associate Professor of Communication Studies, Director of Undergraduate Studies and Honors, and Founding Co-Director of the Intergroup Dialogue and Conflict Resolution Program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She is a graduate of Northwestern University (Ph.D.) and Vanderbilt University (B.S.) and has a multidisciplinary background that spans the social sciences, humanities, and STEM disciplines.
Her interdisciplinary research program informs how individuals manage conflict, engage in difficult dialogues, and communicate across differences in organizations, educational settings, and communities. She also pursues these interests through popular press writing and facilitating training and development workshops on issues related to conflict, dialogue, equity, inclusion, and diversity. Her training and related experiences in civil and family mediation (Rule 31 listed with Tennessee Supreme Courts), ombuds practice, and diversity education facilitation further inform her scholarship and outreach.
As a communication consultant and conflict management specialist, she assists organizations, education professionals, and community groups in these and related areas (e.g., inclusive leadership) that have implications for professional and personal outcomes. Due to her diverse teaching experiences and undergraduate studies, she also enjoys working with secondary and higher education faculty (and graduate teaching assistants) in areas such as inclusive learning, addressing bullying and incivility (e.g., classroom management), and enhancing teaching effectiveness and innovation. Her research interests in classroom communication and the conflict-related experiences of students and faculty further inform her outreach with educators.
Dr. Wright teaches courses in interpersonal communication, interpersonal and intergroup conflict management, intergroup dialogue, close relationships, and the “dark side” of human interaction. She is a native of Louisville, KY.