Intercultural Communication in Language Education College and University Education Research-Oriented Presentation
Fostering Intercultural Competence in Foreign Language Classrooms
The internationalisation of universities worldwide has grown parallel to an increasing demand for interculturally competent graduates, capable of working effectively across cultures and of successfully addressing local and global challenges. Previous studies in the fields of intercultural competence in higher education have focused mainly on the impact of study abroad programmes. Yet, as we face a global pandemic and restricted mobility, the need to research the development of affective, cognitive, and behavioural intercultural dimensions on domestic campuses has become apparent. Based on Deardorff’s Pyramid Model of Intercultural Competence (2006) and the hypothesis that intercultural attitudes are at the base of intercultural competence development, this presentation will discuss results from a one-year longitudinal study aimed at investigating the factors affecting the development of these attitudes in largely "monocultural", EFL classrooms in Japan. Particular attention will be given to the development of core intercultural competence components, namely curiosity, openness, and respect (Deardorff, 2006), as well as components identified as being essential to globally competent workers, namely cultural self-awareness and an awareness of local and global issues (Hunter, 2004). The presenter will discuss results of pre-, mid-, and post-intervention surveys, student assignments, and reflections collected from 205 university students of English as a foreign language. Findings will encourage discussion among foreign language educators on how to better foster an interculturally competent workforce through foreign language education on domestic campuses.
Ana Sofia Hofmeyr is an Associate Professor at Kansai University. Her research focuses on the development of intercultural competence at Japanese universities.