Write a 700- to 1,050-word paper that addresses the following:
- Describe the four levels of intercultural communication competence. Select the level of your own intercultural competence and explain why you believe you are at this level.
- What techniques have you used in the past in intercultural communication? Were they helpful? Why or why not?
- How will you develop intercultural competence? Refer to the measures listed near the end of Ch. 3 of your text and discuss each.
Catherine, These are the Measures from Ch 3 that have to be discussed:
Exposure to and Engaging With Different Worldviews
Developing intercultural communication skills requires exposing oneself to new intercultural contexts and multiple worldviews. This can be accomplished through formal study of intercultural communication, traveling to cultures or communities that are significantly different from your own, interacting with people from other cultures, asking questions about another’s culture, watching movies that unpack different cultural perspectives, and even studying world history to understand how historical events have shaped cultures and relationships between various groups. Exposure to worldviews that are different from your own helps you to expand your schematic frameworks and understand different ways of seeing a particular issue.
Practicing Role-Taking Behavior
Engaging in cognitive and emotional role-taking behavior is helpful in understanding multiple perspectives. For example, even though you may never have had the experience of being an international student, you could think about how you would feel if you were in a different country where you knew nobody, away from your family, in a strange culture where they speak a strange language. You could think about how you would feel if you had to read course material, listen to lectures, and write assignments in a different language and be graded on these. If you are able to deliberately engage in such role-taking exercises, you may be better equipped to empathize with, for example, international student classmates.
Practicing Active Listening
An active listener not only pays attention to what is being said and how it is being said, but also attends to what is being unsaid. Devito (2004) suggests that listening involves receiving, understanding, remembering (reconstructing the message in your mind), evaluating (placing a form of judgment or assessment on the message), and responding (giving some form of feedback). There is an added measure of complexity when cultural differences are involved in this process. Hence in intercultural interactions, active listening not only involves the aforementioned behaviors, but also requires the listener to consciously bear in mind that people interpret messages on the basis of their own understanding of cultural context. Therefore, there may be room for error and the other person’s (cultural) perspective should be taken into consideration.
Seeking Regular Feedback
Just as you need feedback in your assignments to tell you how you are doing in your classes, you need feedback from friends, colleagues, and other sources such as books and media to inform you as to how you are progressing in your intercultural communication competence. Beamer (1992) argues that the competent intercultural communicator “will keep challenging his or her repository, in order to play a part in the matching of signs with the other communicator” (p. 288). Although you may have your own ideas about the extent of your competence, regularly evaluating your performance by soliciting feedback from other sources is an important and necessary part of developing intercultural communication competence. For example, if you have good friends from other cultures, you could ask them what they think about your intercultural communication skills and whether they could give you any suggestions for improvement. You could also ask friends from your own culture about your communication skills. Though at first it might be awkward to initiate a conversation like this, once you get past the awkwardness, you might find that your friends have valuable and honest feedback to share with you about how you can improve your communication skills. You might also find it is not awkward at all. Often people do not correct each other when they act in a slightly offensive way because they want to avoid a perceived potential conflict, do not want to hurt feelings, or are careful not to cause discomfort in a friendship. But if you voluntarily ask them to give feedback, they are likely to be more forthcoming about areas in which you can improve.
Format your assignment consistent with APA guidelines.
Team Assignment 350 words
Select one cultural group to research as a team. Examples of cultural groups may include modern office workers; branches of the military; college students; or various ethnic groups.
Describe the symbols, rituals, and artifacts of your selected cultural group including how they manifest cultural identity through verbal and nonverbal communication.