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Skip to 0 minutes and 7 seconds[Steve Kulich] Culture is complex. Intercultural communication across cultures is even more complex and often confusing, and in our dynamic and ever-changing world, communication across cultures is increasing at an incredible rate, whether through more media exposure, international travel, virtual interaction, or chance encounters. So how can we comprehend this increasingly complex and challenging situation that we face? To meet these issues, we have intentionally developed this course in Shanghai, a pulsating example of today's fast-paced, culturally mixed, dynamically changing, ever-morphing, metro environments. Chances are, at some point, you'll find yourself in or interacting with someone from one of the world's dynamic global cities or one of China's urban centres. So we would like to help you be ready to face such encounters.

Skip to 1 minute and 15 secondsThis is a five-week course. In week one we'll introduce you to comprehending intercultural communication. In week two, contextualising cultural identities, then in week three, clarifying and contrasting values, and week four, comparing cultural communication styles and, finally, in week five, we'll close with cultivating intercultural adaptation. This course has been developed with Future Learn by our team at the Intercultural Institute of Shanghai International Studies University, or what we call SISU for short. [ZHANG Hongling] Our team has been teaching intercultural theories and applications at the undergraduate, graduate, and now doctorate levels since 1994.

Skip to 2 minutes and 10 secondsInstitutionally, we aim to be a both /and university, focusing both on language and culture, on humanities and social sciences, on the historical and the present, on the local and the global. [CHI Ruobing] We will draw on our over 20 years of research, teaching, and international experience to make this an informative and enriching learning experience for you. So we thank you again for joining us.

Welcome and course introduction

Welcome to this new “Intercultural Communication” course! This week introduces the scope and focus of our five weeks together, and addresses the question of how understanding the highlighted attitudes and processes might affect your intercultural encounters.

In our globalized internationalized and interlinked world, it is becoming increasingly apparent how complex each of our respective cultures are! Intercultural communication across cultures is even more complex! And our cross-border interactions can be challenging, confusing, and contentions, and are increasing at an incredible rate, whether through more media exposure, international travel, virtual interaction, or chance encounters.

The looming question is how we can comprehend the increasingly complex and challenging situations that we might face?

To address this and related issues, we have developed this course in Shanghai, a pulsating example of today’s fast paced, culturally mixed, ever-morphing metro environments. Chances are at some point you will find yourself in or interacting with someone from one of the world’s dynamic cities, one of China’s urban centers, or from a range of other unknown, uncertain, or potentially confusing cultural contexts. We are committed to trying to help you be more ready to face such encounters.

In this five-week course we start by looking at ways of

  1. comprehending intercultural communication,
  2. contextualizing cultural identities,
  3. clarifying and contrasting values,
  4. comparing cultural communication styles,
  5. cultivating intercultural adaptation.

In covering these topics, we may at times interchangeably use “intercultural” or “cross-cultural,” but both are generally aimed at addressing interpersonal encounters between people from two distinguishably different cultural backgrounds or contexts. We hope each of these topics will not only help you become more cross-culturally aware, but also develop more intercultural sensitivity and competence.

This video and these first and second steps introduce the course goals and the background and focus of our team. Drawing on our over 20 years of research, teaching, and international experience, our aim is to make this an informative and enriching learning experience for you. Over the next few steps we will provide more information on the educators on this course teaching team, and how you can get the most out of this course.

So we thank you for joining us and are eager to know what you are looking forward to.

A certificate is available on this course

If you complete the majority of the steps in this course, you will be eligible to purchase a Statement of Participation, a personalised certificate in both digital and printed formats - to show that you’ve taken part.

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This video is from the free online course:

Intercultural Communication

Shanghai International Studies University (SISU)