Intercultural Self-awareness

HU professors were asked to describe assignments or experiences where students develop intercultural self-awareness. Their responses are provided with course title or catalog number for reference.

Examples may include:

  • Seeing differences between persons and cultures as valuable
  • Finding value in personal cultural heritage
  • Self-examination of personal worldview
  • Awareness of an interpersonal dynamic which takes place in a multicultural interaction

CO331 Public Relations - View the video "Guess Who's Coming to Denny's" to explore how public perceptions of racism can severely damage a company, and to examine how this franchise restored its public image by changing its policies and programs.

CO481 Mass Communication - Students view Al Jazeera, Fox News, and MSNBC weekly for a total of an hour and make comparisons about what is covered and how it is covered with attention to the cultural mores, assumptions, and conventions the differ between Western and Middle Eastern news broadcasting.

ED 311 Early Adolescent Methods - Students complete a self-assessment called a Quality World essay which examines their cultural background. Within a cultural competency framework it would be considered the know yourself stage. This assignment is in preparation for the Multicultural Practicum (J-term) that normally follows the fall of the Junior year.

TE 233 Foundations of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages / English as a New Language - Most assignments require students to identify their preferences as a learner of a second language and culture, for the purpose of comparing and contrasting with ELLs and engendering empathy. Students complete a survey to determine their own tendencies toward impulsivity or reflectivity when operating in their second language. 

NU 315 Health Assessment - Students choose one culture to discuss one of the cultural assessment models that are available for nursing. Students will describe how they might adjust the nursing care and when taking care of a person of this particular culture

Each chapter in the text for ED410Bus, Soc, and ENG, devotes a section to cultural awareness as a dimension of teacher effectiveness. Those sections are titled "Cultural Diversity and the Learning Climate," "Cultural Diversity and Classroom Management," "Cultural Diversity and Lesson Clarity," "Social Diversity and Instructional Variety," "Cultural Diversity and Task Orientation," "Cultural Diversity and Student Engagement," "Cultutual Diversity and Student Success," and "Cultural Diversity and Performance Outcomes."

EN 151 English- The work of novelist Ernest Gaines and poet Gwendolyn Brooks is assigned. 

EN 431 Shakespeare - Discussions of the plays Othello, The Merchant of Venice, and The Tempest often include considerations of ethnic differences. 

Community Health Nursing - students spend 1-2 days during the semester working with the Allen County Board of Health and interact with Burmese refugees who need health care. Students journal and discuss their experiences as they make clinical rotations at the board of health. Students are exposed to different nationalities, religions, language barriers and translators, and patient advocacy. From one student’s journal, she writes:

"This week at the Fort Wayne Department of Health, I worked in the Infectious Disease Clinic and the Sexually Transmitted Disease Clinic. In the morning I observed Dr. Hayhurst work with patients with Latent Tuberculosis. There were patients who were Burmese; it was my first time working with that population. I observed a Muslim man wearing a more modernized knit cap and an ornately embroidered robe. It was neat to see him in real life instead of on the news. Dr. Hayhurst was very helpful in educating me about TB and the Burmese."

DM405 Documentary - Students are assigned projects where they explore topics that force them into other cultures both on and off campus.

BR231 Old Testament Introduction I and BR241 Old Testament Introduction II - In both courses, students write a research paper that is a study of a short section of an Old Testament book. The assignment includes examining the historical, geographical, and cultural setting of the passage. They are specifically asked to explore insights to be gained from understanding ancient customs, way of life, and outlook on things. 

BR320 Biblical Archaeology - Students present an oral report to the class about an archaeological artifact from the middle eastern or Mediterranean world that has some bearing on biblical history. They also read journal articles about recent archaeological discoveries and write a review evaluating the benefit of these discoveries for the understanding of the Bible. 

BR441, 442, 443, 444 - These advanced biblical literature courses require students to research a problem or question about the book of the Bible under study in the course and to write an exegetical research paper about a short section of that book. Both research projects involve an examination of the historical and cultural background of the literature in an attempt to understand it better.

TH212 and TH441 (Beginning Acting and Advanced Acting Styles) and TH331RT (Religion and Theatre) - Certain productions will address intercultural self-awareness. Assignments include: research of a culture or individual in order to accurately depict a different culture during scene work or stage work. Script and character analysis that address specific needs/wants of an individual who's actions might be dictated by their own culture. In order to do this, students must understand the culture and the differences that exist between it and their own culture.