Intercultural studies and local identity

This course will prepare students for international travel, work, or study abroad and when working with non-Colombians in Colombia. Students will analyze etiquette, education, politics and race current event through movies, magazines, music, art, and television from around the world to create universal strategies on how to interact with any culture at ease. Students will develop an understanding of the varied similarities and differences individuals share around the world and which should be celebrated as part of the human condition. This course emphasizes on exploring the richness of the local (Colombian) identity compared to other countries in North, South and Central America.

Rationale

In this historical period, globalization is a reality we face. We are living in a technological period in which the individual is no longer the inhabitant of a specific place, but of the world in general. This is a result of the ways people communicate, in a minute a person can talk to China and at the same time to the United States. This is one of the results of the current globalized society. In lay terms, the word Globalization is used to talk about commerce and trading, but the concept has been expanded due to the current situation. As technology advances, connectivity and communication among people advances as well and so, we are immersed in a period in which people move to so many different places in a short period of time. People travel around the world and the need for communicating in different languages is growing. Current society demands professionals capable of establishing effective channels to communicate with people around the world. Due to the wide variety of cultures, traditions and practices, mastering the language that is spoken in a given context does not always guarantee successful communication. As a result, understanding and valuing cultural differences becomes imperative. Students are going to explore national and local identities to understand the importance of knowing their own culture as a means to interact with others.

General Objective

To prepare students to face professional and personal situations in cross-cultural contexts where they can explain and discuss in depth about national and local issues compared to the ones from other countries North, South and Central America.

Specific Objectives

  • To develop awareness of the importance of recognizing and valuing cultural differences.
  • To explore the concept of global community and its effects on personal and professional relationships at a local level.
  • To compare and contrast Colombian cultural values with other countries’ cultural values.
  • To get familiar with professional and cultural situations where cultural values need to be understood and recognized to successfully communicate with people from a different cultural background.
  • To develop communicative strategies to overcome cultural misunderstandings.
  • To explore cultural values from different countries around the world.
  • To prepare students to predict cultural changes that they can expect when living in another country.
  • To know how the educational system works in some countries.
  • To recognize some strategies for doing business in a foreign country: etiquette, skills, and knowledge.
  • To develop skills to adapt to life in a new culture.

Methodology

The course will be led by one professor and guest speakers with international experience will be invited to chat about cultural values from different countries. Students are going to read texts that will provide them with elements to have discussions and academic socializations in and out of the classroom. Students will also participate in virtual forums and will write about the contents discussed in the classroom. The contents of the classroom will be developed based on the characteristics of specific countries and students will have the possibility to explore and know cultural aspects of countries with different cultural backgrounds.

Sistema de Evaluación

Course contents

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