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Interesting Lectures and Seminars

Intercultural Communication
(Open course offered by the Global Education Center)

An Environment Where Students Can Learn About Other Cultures While Surrounded by Other Cultures

Hana Yamamoto
Second year, School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Associate Professor Nobuko Suzuki’s “Intercultural Communication” class aims for students to learn about the characteristics of intercultural communication and to become able to engage in smooth communication with people of differing cultural backgrounds. In the class, students individually present short speeches on their discoveries of other cultures in Japanese society and Japanese conversation, as well as engaging in small group discussions. One of the biggest features of the class is the active way in which learning progresses—students are able to immediately implement the intercultural communication theory they study in class.

Another feature is the number of international students participating in the class. Through the class, students can engage in practical communication with students of a differing cultural background. An environment where students can learn about other cultures while surrounded by other cultures is truly appealing as well.

Through this class, I reaffirmed how big a part stereotypes play in my impressions of other people. Previously held stereotypes exert a particularly strong influence when meeting people from other cultures, but the same thing occurs even when interacting with other Japanese. It’s also very difficult to completely rid oneself of these stereotypes. However, if we are aware that our first impressions are influenced by stereotypes, we can be careful of them and engage in smooth communication. I believe this is very important.

I will continue to implement what I learned in the class, combine this knowledge with what I learn through my own experiences, and constantly improve the ways in which I engage in intercultural communication. By thinking and reflecting on my own discoveries, I hope to create my own style of intercultural communication.

Active debate occurs in small group discussions.

(Offered By:WASEDA WEEKLY)