Guía Docente 2020-21


Id.: 32092
Subject type: OBLIGATORIA
Year: 2 Teaching period: Segundo Cuatrimestre
Credits: 6 Total hours: 150
Classroom activities: 66 Individual study: 84
Main teaching language: Inglés Secondary teaching language: Castellano
Lecturer: Email:


The purpose of this course is to examine the field of intercultural communication in terms of its history, basic concepts, developmental models as well as the practical applications.This course is applicable to persons working in multicultural settings, from businesses to non-profit organizations as well as government or educational institutions. During this semester we will move from theory to practice and from personal to the applied. The first part of the course lays out the theoretical foundations of intercultural communication. These concepts would help us analize personal and work situations dealing with culture, ethics and sometimes critical misunderstandings. We will be able to reflect on different situations. We will apply these ideas through experiential learning activities, allowing the students to integrate theory and practice.


General programme competences G01 Ability to analyse and synthesise.
G02 Problem solving.
G03 Ability to organise and plan.
G04 Use of Information Technologies.
G05 Teamwork.
G06 Interpersonal skills
G07 Ability to take on and display an ethical commitment individually and socially.
G08 Ability to work in an international context.
G09 Ability to apply knowledge.
G10 Ability to generate new ideas (creativity).
G11 Ability to undertake research.
G14 Capacity to understand the codes and forms of expression of the mass communications media.
Specific programme competences E20 Ability to suitably present research results orally or by means of audiovisuals or IT, in accordance with the canons of the communications disciplines.
Learning outcomes R01 Reflect on their own inter-cultural experiences and analyse the development of their inter-cultural competence.
R02 Plan and shape future personal and professional objectives.
R03 Apply adaptation schemes to inter-cultural situations.
R04 Analyse specific case studies which feature situations of inter-cultural conflict.
R05 Devise an action and improvement plan for specific case studies which feature situations of inter-cultural conflict.


To have a good command of the English language, not only speaking but a good command of English academic writing. To be registered in this course.



The subject program may change over the semester due to different circumstances, Students will be notified in advance.

Subject contents:

1 - History of Intercultural Communication
    1.1 - Introduction
       1.1.2 - Course Presentation: Expectations & Assessments
    1.2 - Historical context and facts
       1.2.2 - Historical events shaping the beginning of Itercultural Communication Field
2 - Intercultural Competence: a definition
    2.1 - Introduction
       2.1.2 - Key terms definitions
    2.2 - Analysis of the current situation
       2.2.2 - Agreements & disagreements
3 - Intercultural Communication: Assessment and Developmental Models
    3.1 - The Developmental Model of Intercultural Sensitivity (DMIS)
       3.1.2 - Analysis of the DMIS and its main characteristics
    3.2 - The Stress Factors of the Intercultural Experience
       3.2.2 - Applying the stress factors in any adaptation process
    3.3 - An analysis of the intercultural experience
       3.3.2 - Implementation of the DMIS & Stress Factors of the Intercultural Experience
4 - Case Study: The GLOBE Project
    4.1 - General overview of the case study
    4.2 - Practical use of the case study
5 - Case Study: The SAGE Research Project
    5.1 - General overview of the research project
    5.2 - Analysis and practical uses of the research project

Subject planning could be modified due unforeseen circumstances (group performance, availability of resources, changes to academic calendar etc.) and should not, therefore, be considered to be definitive.


Teaching and learning methodologies and activities applied:

During this course a variety of teaching methods will be used including lectures, class discussions, case studies, role plays, simulations, and small group work. One of the main requirements of this course is to complete the assigned readings for the week and be prepared to comment on them.

The student should plan accordingly and read carefully the compulsory readings. This will greatly enhance class discussions. Another important requirement is to participate actively in class discussions and in your small groups.Your contribution is important and through your active participation, we can all learn more from each other and about the topics being analyzed. I will encourage you to practice what is called the intercultural ethic in class, meaning challenging ourselves to fully listen to others´point of views and to appreciate a variety of communication and learning styles. In class and group projects students are encouraged to discuss the process of working in multicultural teams as well as focusing on tasks and relationships. It is very important to have read, worked and reflected on the readings.
A good and professional interculturalist has the following characteristics: Careful observant, good listener, reflective, pays attention to details, curious, respectful and challenges him/ herself in order to learn about other cultures and grow as a global multicultural being. These competences, and/ or skills need to be worked on and developed, this is why different learning activities have been planned for this course.
You are preparing to enter a professional field and you must exhibit those behaviors even beginning now. This includes respectful participation in discussions, adherence to appropriate
interactional styles and a professional attitude both in and out of class. A professional attitude means that you do not ridicule or unnecessarily criticize others either within class or outside the class.
Plagiarism is an illegal and unethical activity. I have NO tolerance for it. Plagiarism is the intentional or unintentional representation of someone else’s work as your own. Everything you
write should be yours or cited correctly using APA 6th Ed. Manual. According to university's regulation as it is stated on "Guía Acadêmica 2015-2016" under part 10 it is explicitly stated what the consequences for plagiarism are. Thus, make sure that your work is yours or your words are paraphrased using references accordingly.The student should plan accordingly and read carefully the compulsory readings. This will greatly enhance their learning. It is very important to have read, worked and reflected on the readings. 


Student work load:

Teaching mode Teaching methods Estimated hours
Classroom activities
Master classes 10
Other theory activities 4
Practical exercises 10
Practical work, exercises, problem-solving etc. 8
Debates 8
Coursework presentations 8
Films, videos, documentaries etc. 5
Workshops 5
Participation in seminars, conferences etc. 2
Assessment activities 4
Extra-curricular activities (visits, conferences, etc.) 2
Individual study
Tutorials 3
Individual study 16
Individual coursework preparation 17
Group cousework preparation 10
Project work 4
Research work 12
Compulsory reading 20
Recommended reading 2
Total hours: 150


Calculation of final mark:

Midterm Exam: 30 %
Group coursework: Case study analysis presentation: 30 %
Final take home exam: 40 %
TOTAL 100 %

*Las observaciones específicas sobre el sistema de evaluación serán comunicadas por escrito a los alumnos al inicio de la materia.


Basic bibliography:

DEARDORFF, Darla K. The SAGE Handbook of Intercultural Competence. London: SAGE, 2009.
PAIGE, R. Michael. Education for the Intercultural Experience. Yarmouth: Intercultural Press, 1993.
VANDER VERG, Michael; PAIGE, R. Michael and LOU, Hemming. Student Learning Abroad: What our students are learning, what they are not, and what we can do about it. Stylus Publishing, 2012
BENNETT, Milton. Basic Concepts of Intercultural Communication.Yarmouth: Intercultural Press, 1998.

Recommended bibliography:

LANDIS, Dan; BENNETT, Janet M.; BENNETT, Milton J. Handbook of Intercultural Training. Thousand Oaks: Sage, 2004
HOFSTEDE, Geert; HOFSTEDE, Gert Jan. Cultures and Organizations Software of the mind: Intercultural Cooperation and its importance for survival. USA: McGraw Hill, 2005
SAVICKI, Victor. Developing Intercultural Competence and Transformation: Theory, research, and application in international education. Virginia: Stylus, 2008.

Recommended websites:

EAIE European Association for International Education
Intercultural Development Inventory
SIETAR Society for Intercultural Education Training and Research
NAFSA: Association of International Educators
IIE Institute of International Education
IAICS International Association for Intercultural Communication Studies

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