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Dr Helen Kaufmann, Oriel College (University of Oxford)

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1 Dr Helen Kaufmann, Oriel College (University of Oxford)
Intercultural Communication in Higher Education through Reflective Dialogue Dr Helen Kaufmann, Oriel College (University of Oxford)

2 Intercultural Communication in Higher Education
Lecturer/Supervisor from culture A Student from culture A Student from culture B The Basic Model

3 Intercultural Communication in Higher Education
Lecturer/Supervisor from culture C, representing HE-culture A Student from culture A Student from culture B The Advanced Model

4 Intercultural Communication in Higher Education
Lecturer/Supervisor from culture C, grew up in culture D representing HE Culture A Student from culture A, dad from culture E and mum from culture F Student from culture B, attended school in culture G The Real Model

5 Introductory activity
Aim: establish a real context for intercultural communication Get together in pairs. Present an intercultural communication challenge that you have experienced to your partner. Take turns. Note each challenge briefly on a post-it note.

6 Literature review I: From recipes to concepts
‚Recipes‘: e.g. Arkoudis (2007), McLean & Ransom (2005), Cortazzi & Jin (1997), Ryan (2000) ‚Concepts‘: e.g. ‚becoming more explicit‘ (Caroll, 2005), ‚meta-cultural sensitivity (Louie, 2005)

7 Literature review II: questioning the concepts
Most of the concepts used to discuss intercultural communication in HE have been criticised, e.g. ‚Confucian education/Western education‘ (Ryan & Louie, 2007), ‚culture‘ (Grimshaw, 2007; Piller, 2007), ‚intercultural communication‘ (Holliday et al., 2004; Holliday, 1999; Piller, 2007) This criticism provides much insight, but goes against widely held perceptions. Are they all wrong?

8 Literature review: conclusions
Concepts, not recipes Question the concepts, but continue the discussion with them. Why should we prefer concepts to recipes and why should we question them? Learning as an uncertain process (cf. e.g. Ramsden, 2003) Postcolonialism vs. (neo)colonialism (cf. e.g. Fox, 1996)

9 Reflective dialogue (Isaacs, Scharmer)
Based on Bohm (1996). Dialogue as a process in which participants move from representing their own interests to developing solutions for all through reflection of self and other. Not designed for intercultural communication nor communication in Higher Education Adaptability?

10 The four fields of con-versation (Isaacs, Scharmer)
Enacting emerging futures 4- Generative dialogue Solutions are generated Collective wisdom Listening from one‘s future self 3- Reflective dialogue Inquiry into assumptions Reflection of self and other Empathic listening Dialogue Rules are reflected 1- Politeness Talking nice Listening=projecting Downloading Rules are reenacted 2- Break-through Power is contested Talking tough (debate, clash) Listening=reloading Anger, frustration Whole Parts Reenacting patterns of the past

11 ‚New capacities for behaviour‘ (Isaacs, 1996: 419)
Voicing Speaking the truth of one‘s authority, what one really is and thinking Suspending Suspension of assumptions, judgement and certainty Listening Without resistance or imposition Respecting Awareness of the integrity of another‘s position and the impossibility of fully understanding it

12 Adaptability to inter-cultural communication in HE
May not work in large classes due to lack of time Can work when working with individual students Crucial transition from field 2 to 3 Western model, based on direct communication styles. Should/can /may we enforce direct communication when talking to people who seem to be used to indirect communication styles?

13 Direct communication for everyone?
Communication style preferences do not only depend on origin/culture, also on personality, speed of adaptation to other styles, etc. Alternatives: discussion of/activities around communication styles written conversation Mindfulness, knowledge, interaction skills (Ting-Toomey, 2004 and 2005)

14 An attempt at reflective dialogue (role-play)
Aim: apply reflective dialogue to an intercultural communication challenge Find a partner for this role-play Decide who will be the lecturer and who the student. Take either one pair of role-cards (e.g. Lecturer A and Student A) or choose a real situation from the post-it collection. There will be 3x5 minutes to practice fields 1-3 of the dialogue model. Your role-cards will give you instructions for 1 and 2 only, field 3 is up to you.

15 Between the 5 minutes slots for lecturer-student dialogue there will be 2x 5 minutes for lecturer-lecturer and student-student dialogue, to reflect how you are behaving compared to the model. Alternative activities: look through intercultural communication activities (Stringer & Cassidy, 2009), engage in written conversation, exchange solutions to intercultural communication challenges.

16 Bibliography S. Arkoudis, Teaching International Students: Strategies to Enhance Learning (Melbourne, 2006), URL: (accessed 15/06/11). D. Bohm, On Dialogue (London and New York, 1996). J. Caroll, ‘Strategies for becoming more explicit’, in J. Carroll and J. Ryan (eds.) (2005), Teaching International Students: Improving Learning for all (London and New York) M. Cortazzi & L. Jin, ‘Communication for learning across cultures’, in D. McNamara & R. Harris (eds.) (1997). Overseas Students in Higher Education (London and New York) Ch. Fox, ‘Listening to the other: Mapping intercultural communication in postcolonial educational consultancies’, in R. Paulston (ed.), Social Cartography: Mapping Ways of Seeing Social and Educational Change (London, 1996) T. Grimshaw, ‘Problematizing the construct of ‘the Chinese learner’: insights from ethnographic research’, Educational Studies 33 (2007) O. Gunnlaugson, ‘Generative dialogue as a transformative learning practice in adult and higher education settings’, Journal of Adult and Continuing Education 12 (2006) 2-19. A. Holliday, ‘Small cultures’, Applied Linguistics 20 (1999) A. Holliday, M. Hyde & J. Kullmann, Intercultural Communication: Advanced Resource Book (London, 2004).

17 W. N. Isaacs, Dialogue and the art of thinking together (New York, 1999).
K. Louie, ‘Gathering cultural knowledge: Useful or use with care?’ in J. Carroll & J. Ryan (eds.), Teaching International Students: Improving Learning for all (London and New York, 2005) P. McLean & L. Ransom, ‘Building intercultural competencies: Implications for academic skills development’, in J. Carroll & J. Ryan (eds.), Teaching International Students: Improving Learning for all (London and New York, 2005)) I. Piller, ‘Linguistics and intercultural communication’, Language and Linguistics Compass 1(2007) P. Ramsden, Learning to Teach in Higher Education (London, 2003; 2nd ed.). J. Ryan, A Guide to Teaching International Students (Oxford, 2000). J. Ryan & K. Louie, ‘False dichotomy? ‘Western’ and ‘Confucian’ concepts of scholarship and learning’, Educational Philosophy and Theory 39 (2007) C. O. Scharmer, Presencing: Learning from the future as it emerges (The Conference On Knowledge and Innovation; Helsinki School of Economics, Finland, and the MIT Sloan School of Management, 2000). C. O. Scharmer, Four fields of Generative Dialogue (Generative Dialogue Course Pack) (MIT, Cambridge, 2003). D. M. Stringer & P. A. Cassidy, 52 Activities for Improving Cross-Cultural Communication (Boston and London, 2009). S. Ting-Toomey, ‘Translating conflict face-negotiation theory into practice’, in D. Landis, J. M. Bennett & M. J. Bennett (eds.), Handbook of Intercultural Training (Thousand Oaks, 2004; 3rd ed.) S. Ting-Toomey, ‘The matrix of face: an updated face-negotiation theory’, in W. B. Gudykunst (ed.), Theorizing about Intercultural Communication (Thousand Oaks, 2005)

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