Chapter 6: Assessing Intercultural Competence in Student Writing: A Multi-Institutional Study

Melanie Rathburn, Jodi Malmgren, Ashley Brenner, Michael Carignan, Jane Hardy, and Andrea Paras

When working with short-term, faculty-led programs, written reflective writing and opportunities for working with local communities enhance global learning. Service-learning, which can be done in both international and domestic contexts, causes greater shifts in perspective and enhanced demonstration of ability to adapt behavior and manage emotions in different contexts.

Discussion Questions

  1. Given that some institutions have programmatic constraints, such as very limited time for pre-departure orientation, how can faculty leaders use the findings from this study to enhance global learning in their pre-departure orientation? What activities or practices would you prioritize in your orientation?
  2. What are some of the limitations of relying on writing prompts to capture student learning or development? Have you worked with students who seem to have experienced profound shifts but have not yet been able to articulate what they have learned? How might the writing prompts be adapted for students of different ages and/or in different disciplines?
  3. This study’s final recommendation calls for collaboration. How might you engage in cultural, disciplinary, and institutional collaborations to enhance global learning?

Supplemental Materials from the Chapter

Prior Experiences Lesson Plan

Writing Prompts