Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Lee, Yueh-Ting


Conventional research on workplace incivility has shown how damaging the perceptions of workplace racism can be on employee well-being, especially minorities at an individual level within organizations. Consequentially, the prolonged exposure to racial discrimination through experience and observation has resulted in racial trauma, which increases an individual’s sensitivity to racial discrimination. One result of this is the hostile attribution of racial discrimination in the workplace. Research on the impact of racial discrimination in the workplace has shown that there are severe negative implications for employees who perceive it, especially when an individual misattributes an interaction as racial discrimination. This study examined the reactions of individuals who observed a workplace interaction between a leader and their subordinates while manipulating the factors leadership style and the presence workplace incivility. It was theorized that interactions using specific leadership styles to facilitate discussion in different ways would moderate an individual’s perception of interactional justice and their race would influence their perception of justice during the interaction which would influence their perception of discrimination overall. Though no significance was found to support the suggest theoretical relationships, secondary analyses revealed interactions with race leadership style, employment status and correlations between perceived interactional justice, racial discrimination and dispositional measures that warrant further investigation. These relationships, their implications and the limitations of the study are all discussed as well.




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