In response to Department of Defense and Air Force directives to provide cultural education and awareness to enlisted corps, the Air Force Culture and Language Center offers participants of the Community College program Air Force distance learning course, Introduction to Cross-Cultural Communication, to provide knowledge and skills associated with cross-cultural communication in an applied context.
Recently, the CCC course has received major upgrades from the course instructors, Dr. John Miller, Adjunct Instructor and Dr. Susan Steen, CCC Full Professor and Division Head of Faculty and Region of the AFCLC.
“Our goal in updating the course was to refresh the material,” Dr. Steen said. “We wanted to include some recent and emerging constructions, theories and approaches in the fields of intercultural and cross-cultural communication, and incorporate contemporary examples and ‘real world’ scenarios to make the course as interactive and dynamic as possible.”
The refresh of the course has come at an optimal time amid significant changes and changes within the Department of Defense and around the world. The new version of the CCC course officially launched in the spring of 2021 and registered for its first pilot class in the fall of 2021.
Although a redesign of the course was necessary to speed up learning, the general objectives of the course remain the same. The course is designed to meet the following Total Force cross-cultural competency needs:
• Objective 1: Become familiar with the main concepts and skills of intercultural communication.
• Objective 2: To provide an opportunity to practice intercultural communication skills in a variety of contexts.
• Objective 3: Inculcate a sense of the importance of competent intercultural communication in personal and professional contexts.
The updated course includes several innovative revisions to further assist Airmen and Guardians who enroll in achieving these goals. Some of these updates include revised teaching stories, fewer lessons, and new required readings and videos.
“In the new version, students read excerpts from books and articles by luminaries in cross-cultural and cross-cultural fields such as Dr. Janet Bennett, Dr. Milton Bennett, Dr. Gert Jan Hofstede, Dr. Jack Condon, Dr. James Neuliep, Dr. Mitchell Hammer, Dr. Stella Ting-Toomey and Dr. Leeva Chung,” Dr. Miller said. “Students are also introduced to the work of psychologist and Nobel laureate Dr. Daniel Kahneman and his book, Thinking, Fast and Slow, winner of the 2012 National Academies Communication Award for Most Creative Work In insightful and highly readable excerpts from his book, Dr. Kahneman helps our students understand the differences between conscious thought and intuition.
The updated version of the course is still quite new, but it is already showing positive results.
“We noticed that students seem better able to analyze cross-cultural conflict situations and explain what caused the dissonance. There has also been a significant increase in enrollment compared to a year ago when the latest version of the course was launched. That’s great news!” said Dr. Miller.
Since the pilot offering of the updated course, additional improvements have been made for the next session.
“In this new version of CCC, students will also be able to view two 30-minute video lectures by legendary scholar, the late Dr. Gary Weaver, who was a pioneer in the field and the first to use the Iceberg culture metaphor. Additionally, students will read excerpts from his book on American culture, which he co-authored with Adam Mendelsohn,” Dr. Miller explained. “Students also learn the origins of such well-worn metaphors used to describe American culture as ‘the Melting Pot’ and more recent ones such as ‘the salad bowl’, ‘the mosaic’ and ‘the cookie cutter’. They will also get unique insight into the collectivist values of the “Fertile Verge,” the American frontier described by the late Daniel Boorstin, former Librarian of Congress.
Going forward, course instructors will continue to review student discussion forum posts, assignments, quizzes, and the final exam and make changes as needed to add clarity and depth to concepts and skills presented in the course. They also plan to add more interactive content, such as situational judgment exercises based on avatars and scenarios.
“We are always looking for content that would strengthen the course and improve students’ understanding of intercultural competence mindsets and the use of intercultural competence skills. Stay tuned!” says Dr. Steen.
This training course is offered by Air University to enlisted members of the United States Armed Forces participating in the CCAF program. It fulfills three semester hours of academic credit, which can be applied to resident or institutional credit and/or elective program credit requirements for the CCAF-FCVI Associate of Applied Science degree. Additionally, this credit will meet the basic requirements for the CCAF-FCVI Diploma in Military Technology and Applied Science Management (MTASM), which is scheduled to launch in fiscal year 2023.
The registration window for the 2022 summer session for CCC opens from April 12 to 18, 2022, and the course will take place from May 5 to August 17, 2022.
For more information on the CCC course, visit https://www.airuniversity.af.edu/AFLCC/courses/Cross-Cultural-Communication/ or contact the Student Support Team at [email protected] .mil.
|Date posted:||18.02.2022 16:33|
|Location:||MONTGOMERY, AL, USA|
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