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DC&E:Cultural Learning

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David Shallenberger

on 27 March 2015

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Transcript of DC&E:Cultural Learning

Deepening appreciation
Cultural Learning
Where are we?
So your task is ...
Where are we going?
What are some models of cultural development that you grok?
Models and Assumptions
Applying Models
The Nuances
In general, and now ...
Considering your destination, client population and program/participant goals:
What choices will you make about activities for your cross-cultural components? Why?
Come back to the whole group at [XX], and be prepared to talk about what you will do, and to give comments and critique to the other groups.
So your task is:


Certainly. But what other choice is there?
Tall order?
To succeed in our aim, Aitken says, we should have

the stamina of an Olympic runner, the conversational skill of a professor of languages, the detachment of a judge, the tact of a diplomat. And that is not all. If [we] are going to measure up to the living and working in [international settings], [we] should also have a feeling for the culture; [our] moral judgment should not be too rigid; [we] should be able to merge with the local environment with... ease; and [we] should show no signs of prejudice.
Aitken’s challenge
Create community;
Support individuals in their own growth;
Provide models, explanations and opportunities that make sense to them; and
Build on teachable moments
So your job is to
Michael Paige (1993):
Cultural differences
Ethnocentrism
Language
Cultural immersion
Cultural isolation
Prior intercultural experience
Expectations
Visibility and invisibility
Status
Power and control
The nuances: Intensity Factors
How do various personality factors affect one’s intercultural experience?
MBTI
Big Five Factors
Tolerance for ambiguity
The nuances: Personality
How does being a member of a “marginalized” group affect one’s intercultural experience?
Black identity (e.g., Jackson)
Latino identity (e.g., Quinones-Rosado)
Asian-American identity (e.g., Kim)
TCK identity (e.g, Pollock)
LGBT identity (e.g., Cass)

And the combination of these?
The nuances: Identity development
Regardless of all the models, learning depends on individuals and the community of them:
Where are the individuals in their own journeys of discovery?
What is their openness to ambiguity?
What has their experience been in similar situations?
What is the culture of the community?
The nuances

Letter to self
Final projects
Re-entry reflections and connections
Other ideas??
After Experience: Other Possibilities

How have you made sense of what you learned; and
What have you done with what you’ve learned?
After Experience: Reflecting on questions such as these:

Reiterative project proposals
Scavenger Hunts
Drop-offs
D-I-E Exercises
Other ideas??
During Experience: Other Possibilities

It has been said that Swiss live their multiculturality everyday in every moment. Look for evidence of this today. Make note of 3-5 examples that reflect this statement, describe the examples in your journal, and talk to at least one Swiss person about your observations. What do you learn from your conversation with them?
Write you own wondering and explore it. Be sure to talk to local Swiss informants as you do whatever it is.
During Experience: Keeping a Guided Journal
Culture Bingo
Exercises that give students the opportunity to learn about global connections (“What’s Happening in the World” bombards students with factoids)
Learning the language (even a few courtesy phrases)
Before Experience: Other Possibilities

Individualism <> Collectivism
: What is valued more highly, the individual or the collective (family, workplace, society)?
Power Distance
: To what extent to do the less powerful members of a society accept that power is distributed unequally.”
Uncertainty Avoidance
: To what extent are people in a given culture comfortable with ambiguity and risk?
Masculinity <> Femininity
: Is the quality of life characterized by assertiveness, competition and aggressive success, or, alternatively, by modesty, compromise and co-operative success?
Before Experience: Learning Models of Cultural Difference (Hofstede)

Human nature
: Basically evil <> Mixture of good and evil <> Basically good
Relationship to nature
: Subject to nature <> Harmony with nature <> Mastery over nature
Time
: Past oriented <> Present oriented <> Future oriented
Activity
: Being (who you are) <> Growing (self-development) <> Doing (action)
Social relationships
: Authoritarian <> Group-oriented <> Individualistic
(in Kohls, 2001)

Before Experience: Learning Models of Cultural Difference (Kluckhohn)
Individual leaves with:

Changed understanding of self vis à vis self and other
Enlarged sense of neighborhood and belonging
Reintegration
Introduce issues

Lay groundwork
Intensive experience with time, opportunities, and methods to integrate learning
Individual enters with his/her own:

Experience with travel and other cultures
Learning style
Comfort with ambiguity
Openness to change and growth
Learning and living Competencies
Ability to reflect
Ability to synthesize and integrate
Understanding of the other culture(s)
Background
Values

Individuals start at different places.
The ability to stand back and reflect on one’s experience is not innate; if it is not present, it must be taught.
It is hard to move out of our own mindset.
Assumptions about how learning works

Understanding the dynamics of cultural differences and being able to apply that understanding through engagement with another culture;
Seeing global connections in the analysis of significant issues and perceiving multiple perspectives and interpretations of those issues;
Having an expanded sense of self as a “global citizen” and understanding oneself in relationship to a larger global society.
Being able to reflect upon and understanding how personal identity is transformed through interaction with the “global other” (i.e., persons who come from another culture);
Understanding and being able to appreciate the context and perspective of the global other; and
Being able to apply cross-cultural sensitivity and awareness to a variety of situations, societies and cultures.
Introduction: Toward a Lexicon of Cultural Interpretation
Where is one on his/her psycho-social-emotional-faith development journey and how does this affect one’s intercultural experience?
Chickering’s vectors
Erikson’s developmental tasks
Vaillant’s “adaptation to life”
Levinson’s stages
Fowler’s faith development
Gilligan’s “different voice”
The nuances: Psycho-social development
We’ve spoken about the individuals who make up your groups – who they are and how we might “teach to” them.

Now we’ll explore a bit about something that’s common to all our projects: how to facilitate the cross-cultural growth that undergirds IE work.
Emphasis program puts on this varies:
A faculty–designed program on a particular content area may totally ignore it
A direct enrollment program –inbound or outbound -- may expect student to get it by osmosis, or may have ancillary course
A culturally-focused program may build this in as a core competence
It’s all about CONTEXT
Re-entry
Orientation
The U Curve
Re-entry
Orientation
The “W Curve”
Re-entry
Orientation
The “Breaking Wave Curve”

Understanding the dynamics of cultural differences and being able to apply that understanding through engagement with another culture;
Seeing global connections in the analysis of significant issues and perceiving multiple perspectives and interpretations of those issues;
Having an expanded sense of self as a “global citizen” and understanding oneself in relationship to a larger global society.
Being able to reflect upon and understanding how personal identity is transformed through interaction with the “global other” (i.e., persons who come from another culture);
Understanding and being able to appreciate the context and perspective of the global other; and
Being able to apply cross-cultural sensitivity and awareness to a variety of situations, societies and cultures.
Introduction: Toward a Lexicon of Cultural Interpretation

Individuals start at different places.
The ability to stand back and reflect on one’s experience is not innate; if it is not present, it must be taught.
It is hard to move out of our own mindset.
Assumptions about how learning works


Interactive co-teaching and co-learning strengthen the effects and opportunities present in the situations encountered.
It is important for the program developer to set up conditions so that participants feel comfortable trying out new behaviors and making mistakes.
An intense experience of two weeks and even an entire year abroad is probably merely planting seeds and fertilizing soil.
Assumptions about how learning works
Individual enters with his/her own:

Experience with travel and other cultures
Learning style
Comfort with ambiguity
Openness to change and growth
Learning and living Competencies
Ability to reflect
Ability to synthesize and integrate
Understanding of the other culture(s)
Background
Values
Post-Program:

Introduce issues
Lay groundwork
Intensive experience with time, opportunities, and methods to integrate learning
Individual leaves with:

Changed understanding of self vis à vis self and other
Enlarged sense of neighborhood and belonging
Pre-Program:
Reintegration
Yet
Cultures are not monolithic
Don't confuse the individual, the cultural and the universal.
Complications to consider!
People express multiple cultures
And multiple values. The limitations of a relativist perspective: are human rights universal?
How do you manage?
Culture is many faceted and subtle
Full transcript