Title social competence and intercultural learning for students through transnational placements
Project Number A/06/A/F/PL-158.880
Project Type Mobility - Students (2000 - 2006)
Individual Participation Not possible
Marketing Text The main objective of SKILLS was to prepare students for the intercultural experience during the professional placement through a pre-placement training and an accompanying intercultural diary
Summary The objective of the project SKILLs was the provision, organisation and accompanying evaluation of transnational placements. These placements are integrated into the curricula of all degree programmes at the Fachhochschule Salzburg and were fully accredited on successful completion on the basis of defined ECTS credit points. The project focussed not only on the domain-specific knowledge acquisition as monitored by the supervisors in the companies and at the university but also on intercultural and social skills. For that purpose an intercultural training based on Hofstede’s cultural dimensions was designed to sensitise students for cultural differences and raise their awareness for potential areas of conflict. During the placement, students kept an unstructured intercultural diary and finally submitted an intercultural report based on structured questions. This double reflective loop and the combination of the informal blog with the more formal report proved a valid instrument for increasing the participants’ awareness and sensitivity for cultural differences. Participants commented that they were now better equipped in judging their own actions and those of others and putting them into perspective and context. The innovative aspect of the project hinges on the integration of intercultural aspects into domain-specific placements, which has not yet been given sufficient attention. The SKILLS concept was successfully presented at several international conferences including SPACE08, NAFSA08 and EAIE0. A successor project which will expand the concept and validate it on a European basis has been initiated.
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