Presentation on theme: "Understanding Basic American Culture. No rule book exists that covers all aspects on how to act around: Different cultures Country to country Even person."— Presentation transcript:
Understanding Basic American Culture
No rule book exists that covers all aspects on how to act around: Different cultures Country to country Even person to person
However, if you are: Well mannered Tolerant Respectful You are likely to feel comfortable in any company or situation. Most people will accept you into their circle
The United States of America is very diverse. Many key traits and customs are shared by nearly all Americans If you follow the following tips, you will be better prepared to understand Americans and enjoy your stay in America
American Friendliness Americans tend to be friendly, it can be genuine and meaningful or it can be something less than friendly, superficial Most people are very nice particularly on a university campus Most people are willing to assist and help you make your stay in this country enjoyable Most people will make you feel welcome
However: Many Americans think if you are studying in this country then you are wealthy and some will see you as vulnerable and naive
Saying Hello Returning a greeting doesnt usually mean anything. It is simply a way for Americans to be polite. It is considered rude if you do not return someones greeting Americans often greet others, even people they dont know. If someone says hello or hi you are expected to return the greeting
Formal Greeting If your culture allows, extend your hand for a handshake Do not kiss peoples cheeks or touch cheek to cheek Maintain reasonable personal space and shake hands only!
Greeting Friends If appropriate, you may hug friends. If youre not sure dont hug! With new friends, handshakes are best
Kissing Friends If appropriate, you may kiss female friends on the cheek If you are a man though, DO NOT attempt to kiss a mans cheek as most consider this inappropriate.
Holding Hands If appropriate you may hold hands with female friends Americans NEVER hold hands with another man unless they are romantically involved.
Personal Space Americans are not comfortable if someone else is too close to them Imagine 1-1 ½ meter circle drawn around you that follows you where ever you go Only close friends and family members are allowed to get closer Do not touch people when you talk to them and only get close to them when you are invited
Conversation Americans love to talk Be Polite Avoid conversation about: Racism Foreign Policies Gun Control Religion These subjects are best discussed among friends
Say nice things Avoid being critical or rude Be tactful If someone is courteous and kind say thank you If you bump into someone or when moving into someones personal space say excuse me Conversation with Strangers
Waiting in Line Be patient Wait your turn Never cut in line Never push or jostle people
Tips for Women Learn to say NO Be polite but be FIRM if necessary Try not to show you are frightened or intimidated if someone shows an interest in you NEVER let someone make you feel guilty if you are not interested in them If you are frightened by someone, REPORT this to a teacher, a friend, a counselor, or to the police. We will make this person follow the rules
Tips for Men Be polite Be respectful of others particularly to ALL women If you are interested in a woman and, if appropriate, kindly ask if she would be interested in meeting in a safe and public place If she is not interested, move on! Leave her alone!
Tips for Couples in a Relationship Never touch the other in a rude or an inconsiderate way. No matter how slight, it could result in being arrested and going to jail There is much attention given in this country to cases that involve couples fighting Penalties are serious