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CAS 271 - Intercultural Communication

Professor: Ines Meyer-Hoess
Email: iah2@psu.edu 

In today’s globalized world where many of us are frequently in contact with people from different cultures, continents, and contexts, we cannot assume that our own cultural values and beliefs, behaviors and expectations are universal. We discuss definitions of culture and explore the various cultures we encounter in our daily lives to come to appreciate the complexity involved in intercultural exchanges, and to acknowledge the influence of context and power in our intercultural interactions. Our approach is interdisciplinary in perspective and global in outlook.

Course Objectives

  • Stepping beyond our own (cultural) comfort zones by practicing skills such as observing, listening, and analyzing to help us navigate intercultural encounters both in personal and professional contexts.
  • Utilizing a conceptual vocabulary for explaining and understanding intercultural communication so we can put these concepts to work in real-world situations.
  • Assessing how factors such as gender, race, history, socio-economic and cultural background affect the way we see our world(s).