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Integrating Culture & Intercultural Communication


D E S C R I P T I O N:

Students need to learn both culture and language in order to be effective communicators in a global context. Developing intercultural communicative competence involves curiosity, inquiry, discovery of self and others, interaction, reflection and relationship building. Fertile classroom environments for such a process to occur are learner-centered and collaborative. Teachers act as facilitators, guiding learners to set goals and design projects, providing authentic resources and opportunities to interact with native speakers, posing open-ended questions, and engaging learners in reflective activities. 

However, teachers often struggle with the idea of taking time away from learning the language and question how to “teach” culture in the target language. This Virtual Learning Module (VLM) will clarify the connections between culture and language, clarify the research theories behind intercultural communication, and introduce  the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements for Intercultural Communication.

By the end of the module, you will be able to: 

  • Explain the basic theoretical underpinnings of intercultural communication.
  • Articulate what intercultural communication is and why it is necessary to stakeholders.
  • Understand how culture can be embedded in language learning rather than taught explicitly.
  • Identify 4 steps to integrating culture and intercultural communication into the classroom. 
  • Design intercultural opportunities for learners to investigate and interact. 
  • Implement the cyclical process of noticing, comparing, reflecting and interacting for developing intercultural communicative competence.
  • Use the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements for Intercultural Communication in a learned language for planning.
  • Describe why it is important to assess intercultural communication.
  • Explain why it is important for learners to understand components of the ICC proficiency levels and how you will build this knowledge.

Because intercultural development requires changes in attitudes, curiosity and other affective dispositions, it has been considered difficult, if not impossible to assess. The fact that the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do statements describe how learners can demonstrate their interculturality through language makes it easier to evaluate and show growth. In fact, benchmarks and indicators from the tool can serve as or be adapted to statements for assessment rubrics. An equally important use of the Can-Do Statements is as a learner self-assessment tool, where the learner is able to modify the Can-Do examples to set personal goals. 

W A T C H   T H E   L I V E   C A L L - I N   D I S C U S S I O N


P R E S E N T E R:

Currently a K-12 district world language specialist in Louisville, KY, Jacque Van Houten was the world language consultant at the KY Department of Education for 15 years and, prior to that, taught French at the high school and university level. She has a MA from University of Cincinnati and PhD in Educational Leadership from Miami University of Ohio. She has served as president of the National Council of State Supervisors for Languages (NCSSFL), National Network for Early Language Learning (NNELL) and American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL, 2015).  Jacque was on the writing teams for both the original and revised NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements and led the development of the Intercultural Communication Can-Do Statements. Her accolades include NCSSFL State Supervisor of the Year, the French government’s Palmes Académiques, and ACTFL’s Florence Steiner Award for Leadership in K-12 Foreign Language Education.

MEMBER PRICE: $39
NON-MEMBER PRICE: $59
Access: 1 year (starting at the moment of purchase)
1 Contact Hour

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