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Intercultural Competence Training

Exploring the roles and perceptions of guest and host in an international and intercultural context

As globalization and academic mobility continues to evolve, life in and around the university has become increasingly culturally diverse. We often work, socialize and interact with people of different backgrounds and don’t always have the time or focus to be aware of the complex dynamics at play in such relationships. Whether we’re in the role of host or guest, in professional life intercultural competence is an important asset, especially when such diversity becomes the norm. Improving one’s ability to understand, accept and cope with such divergence from what we consider "normal" can help enhance a person’s ability to interact with new environments, cultures and individuals, and make the time spent more exciting and enriching.

Taking a closer look at the way we interact and relate to others and also reflecting on our own and others’ cultural practices, values and assumptions can also be very helpful in breaking down the borders that impede fruitful and meaningful interaction between colleagues and acquaintances of differing backgrounds.

Through the lens of intercultural competence we will explore together the meaning of host and guest - going beyond a traditional view of these roles to a place where both carry an active and meaningful responsibility in the exchange between individuals and cultures. Improving ones intercultural competence builds upon the skills needed to explore these differences in a respectful and impactful manner beyond politeness and appreciation.

So how does one become interculturally competent, and what is the meaning of culture in this context? What is your personal communication style and how is it perceived by others? What types of cultural challenges have you experienced and how did you deal with these?

Using concepts from the field of Intercultural Communication and taking an interactive approach, we will cover these and similar issues in an informative and enjoyable way. The overall aim of the workshop is to help participants interact more effectively in culturally diverse settings and enhance their intercultural awareness and sensitivity.

    Date: Thursday, 22nd November 2018
    Time: 9:00 - 17:00 (Lunch will be provided)
    Location: Room V2-105/115 (Main building of Bielefeld University)
    Target Audience: professors, international doctoral students and postdocs, academic and non-academic employees of Bielefeld University, spouses/partners
    Trainer: Munira Jamal, M.A.
Please contact welcome@uni-bielefeld.de to register for the workshop.

Registration Deadline: November 7, 2018.

Munira Jamal is an experienced intercultural, academic skills and language trainer. She completed her Teaching German as a Foreign Language and English Studies in Germany and earned her M.A. in Intercultural Communication in the UK. She designs and delivers workshops for universities and other institutions and has worked in many different training settings.