The competencies selected
Ten core competencies were selected from the full set developed in the Global People project. The primary aim was to select competencies which had particular relevance to the student experience at each of three stages – Transition (entry into an unfamiliar environment); Participation (making sense of working with people from different cultures); and Employability (producing evidence of acquired knowledge and competence). The final list was:
|Information Gathering||Flexible Thinking||Flexible Behaviour||Rapport Building|
|Language Learning||Making Yourself Understood||Attentive Listening|
|Self Awareness||Personal Strength||Spirit of Adventure|
The full Framework is provided in the Resource Bank.
Putting it into practice
There are multiple potential uses of the Competency Framework in a Higher Education context. Four that the research team at Warwick has actively investigated are:
Undergraduate personal development
The Framework can be made available to students for self-access and personal development work, supported by links to resources that can be used to foster competency development. Users can be encouraged to record and reflect on their international experience and to map and extend their intercultural learning.
Support for study abroad schemes
Selected competencies can be used as the focus for discussion of international transitions both in preparation for study abroad and as part of a debriefing process for those returning from study or work abroad.
Contribution to the international curriculum
An exploration of intercultural competencies can broaden and deepen the understanding of students already studying issues of international communication and collaboration. An insight into competencies extends traditional analyses of culture (which are often limited to national differences) and introduces the notion of underlying generic competencies for operating internationally.
Development of intercultural training for staff and students
Selecting elements of the Framework for reflection and discussion can form the basis of professional development training for staff who deal with a culturally diverse student population or even for staff and student co-learning around the challenges of cultural diversity.