Volume 4, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2032-6904
  • E-ISSN: 2032-6912
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The paper will outline a research project based on the analysis of diary entries written by a multinational cohort of German, Polish, Chinese and US-American Master students during a time span of 15 months as part of the course requirements for a module entitled “Applied Intercultural Communication” in the MA “International Management and Intercultural Communication / GlobalMBA”. The diary-writing project, which was started in 2013, is intended to serve two main purposes:

  1. For the students, the diaries will be a tool and personal “learning log” to gain greater awareness of their own cultural values and to critically reflect on the process of cultural adjustment (or lack thereof) and the experience of travelling, living and studying with a multinational cohort in four foreign countries. In this way, the diaries also represent a dynamic scenario of the students’ acculturation process at various points of their studies.
  2. We, as researchers, educators and program developers, want to explore how this experience-based approach allows us to chart a student’s development and attitudinal shifts from the beginning to the end of a 15-month program, both in terms of personal growth and intercultural learning. Consequently, the diaries are intended to serve as a tool to discover and assess which aspects of human experience are and observable and which areas require the students to undergo processes of and adaption in order to function adequately in new cultural environments.

Students are encouraged to observe, monitor and report on any culturally defined and “different” situation without being judgemental. Moreover, students are required to specifically report on the process of team/cohort building and on ways of dealing with criticism, disappointment, conflict and “Otherness”. The findings of our qualitative research will be fed back into the process of further curriculum integration and development.


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