Intercultural Effectiveness

Subject UNIB10012 (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Credit Points: 12.5
Level: 1 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2015.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 1 two hour-lecture, one per week, 1 two-hour tutorial, one per week
Total Time Commitment:

170 hours





Recommended Background Knowledge:


Non Allowed Subjects:


Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:

Subject Overview:


There are now unprecedented opportunities for intercultural collaboration to create more responsible social and environmental strategies to address global issues. With transformations in information systems and the internet, these interactions have also become common place on a day to day basis. Therefore, people are interacting with others from different cultures at increasing rates. Hence, developing competency in intercultural interaction becomes critical in a world where graduates are expected to work well across cultures.

This subject will provide students with the opportunity to develop intercultural skills to help them positively meet these challenges. Specifically, students will develop an awareness of how culture influences the way individuals think, feel, act, and acquire knowledge. The subject will also explore how collaborative and pervasive technologies can be effectively harnessed for intercultural interactions. Students will be introduced to how culture can have an impact on various disciplines, including; scientific research, health sciences, business and the performing arts.

This subject is designed to establish a platform for lifelong intercultural learning. It will be particularly useful for students involved in, or planning international experiences such as study abroad or exchange, international students and anyone expecting to work, live and learn in different cultural settings.


This subject will cover theories and concepts such as Bennett's Developmental Model of Intercultural Sensitivity, Hofstede's Cultural Dimensions, Adler's discussion of intercultural competence and their application to various social, business, scientific and technological contexts.

Learning Outcomes:


On completion of this subject the student is expected to:

  1. Be able to identify the cultural influences affecting interpersonal interactions in a work context
  2. Understand how culture can impact work behaviour and attitudes amongst colleagues, students, and clients
  3. Have enhanced abilities associated with multicultural work environments
  4. Understand the implications and complexities of intercultural communication
  5. Have developed intercultural communication skills
  6. Be able to discuss the different international and cultural perspectives that may exist around their chosen discipline area
  7. Have acquired further knowledge on collaborative and pervasive technologies
  • Part 1: Individual Portfolio, requring approximately 20 - 25 hours of work (20%), addressing Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) 1, 4 and 6.
  • Part 2: Individual Fieldwork Project, requiring approximately 30 - 35 hours of work (30%), (addressing ILOs 1, 2, 3 and 5)
  • Part 3: Group Work, requiring approximately 40 - 4 5hours of work (40%), (addressing ILOs 2, 3, 5 and 7)
  • Part 4: Participation, requring approximately 10 - 13 hours of work (10%), (addressing ILO 2 and 5).

All of the assessment in the subject requires students to apply the theories in intercultural communication and intercultural effectiveness to real world examples. This approach trains students in looking at challenges and real world events from different points of view and equips you with critical analysis skills and competencies.

In Part 1 of the Assessment (due Week 5), students complete a portfolio that consists of a critical cross-cultural analysis of recent news articles. In Part 2, students will be engaged in a topic of their choice.

Prescribed Texts:

Reading Pack

Recommended Texts:

Reading Pack

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completion of this subject students should have developed the ability to:

  • Ability to examine a complex problem from different perspectives – specifically the ability to conduct analysis using different cultural frameworks
  • Ability to formulate and articulate rational arguments through seminar discussions and peer review process
  • Ability to apply theory to practice in seminar discussions
  • Ability to prepare written reports
  • Ability to achieve strong learning outcomes within a collaborative team environment.



This subject is taught using a combination of lectures and tutorials to deliver content and theories. In addition, the tutorials will present opportunities to reflect on personal past experiences. However, the assessment tasks are designed to bring about new cultural experiences that will challenge students to further reflect and analyse their new cultural contexts. Therefore, as a whole, the students will have the opportunity to use newly acquired knowledge in real life.


All material and readings provided are from leading authors from the fields of intercultural communication and cross-cultural analyses. Students will also be encouraged to look at films, news articles and works of fiction.


This subject is relevant to the future careers of all the students as it equips them with intercultural communication skills and perspectives. This is one of the key graduate attributes of the University and recognised as important by employers. In the subject, examples from industry will be used to highlight the connection of the topics covered here to industry practice.

Related Breadth Track(s): Debating Diversity in Society

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