Intercultural Communication


Course Objective

This course is organised in close cooperation with VU-NT2 and CIW
teaching staff with experience in the domain of intercultural and
cross-cultural communication. The main goals for this course are:
- to increase your cultural awareness on a practical level in different
settings, such as the international classroom, website design,
face-to-face encounters and media texts;
- to increase your cultural awareness on a theoretical level by
exploring the key concepts used in the field of intercultural
- to explore how these key concepts translate to research in
communication and linguistic research by performing your own small-scale
analyses of different settings in which intercultural communication

Course Content

This course introduces the topic of intercultural communication by
relating it to discourse in different modes of communication or genres
and across languages. During the course we will introduce and learn to
use different discourse analytic approaches to explore the features of a
data set from the idea that 'culture' and 'interculturality' can be
identified in discourse in different ways.
The generic examples we work with during the course may vary from news
interviews to speeches, to social media and news articles Lectures and
meetings will be geared towards presenting the different approaches and
learning how these theories can be applied to data that students will
themselves collect. Group presentations, assignments and discussions aim
to link the observations and analyses of the data to theoretical
debates, practice and to the real life learning environment of the
international classroom.

Teaching Methods

The meetings for this course will be interactive lectures, seminars in
which you will apply theory to data examples, and guest lectures (in
total 3 meetings of 2 hours each, per week)

Method of Assessment

This course is organised in collaboration with VU-NT2 and will therefore
also consist of assignments in which you are asked to reflect and engage
with students who follow the NT2 course programme to learn Dutch and who
are participating in an 'international classroom'. The collaboration
with NT2 means that you will engage in a participatory observation
assignment in the first weeks of the course, followed by a guest lecture
of one of the NT2 teachers. There will be a second assignment that
covers another aspect of intercultural communication in a different area
that varies each year. It may involve an analysis of website features or
media texts.
Both assignments will be graded and make up 30% of your final grade. The
course ends with an exam, that contributes 70% to your final grade and
which you have to pass to successfully complete this course. We expect
all students to actively participate in the course.

Entry Requirements

The courses Academic English CIS-L&S Grammar (L_EABAALG103) and Academic
English CIS-L&S Writing (L_EABAALG104).


The literature for this course consists of the book by Hua Zhu (2014).
Exploring Intercultural Communication. Language in Action, and
additional articles that are available via the UBVU library.

Target Audience

Second year students CIS.

General Information

Course Code L_AABACIW201
Credits 6 EC
Period P4
Course Level 200
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Humanities
Course Coordinator dr. S.A. Blackwell
Examiner dr. S.A. Blackwell
Teaching Staff dr. S.A. Blackwell
prof. dr. A.J. Cienki

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Last-minute registration is available for this course.

Teaching Methods Seminar, Lecture
Target audiences

This course is also available as: