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Intercultural Competence Academic Certificate

Data from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) show that employers are seeking college graduates with strong skills in intercultural communication. An Academic Certificate in Intercultural Competence will provide students with the necessary skills and knowledge to communicate effectively with people from different cultural and social backgrounds. An interculturally competent student understands the challenges of communicating across cultures, knows the basic theories of intercultural communication, and applies the skills required to communicate effectively with diverse groups of people in different social contexts. More specifically, by completing the Intercultural Competence Certificate, students will be able to (1) identify their own cultural values, beliefs, and assumptions (self-awareness); (2) develop an awareness of individual cultures and social groups different from their own (awareness of others); and (3) adapt to be more inclusive of different cultural perspectives (cultural bridging) by acquiring the necessary skills to live and work in a diverse and complex global society. 

The International and Global Studies (IGS) program together with the Department of World Languages, Literatures and Cultures (WLLC) offers an Intercultural Competence Academic Certificate to those students who complete the following requirements:

  1. INST 240 Thinking Globally: An Introduction (CHC, G)
  2. LC 250 Intercultural Communication (G)
  3. Experiential learning component. This requirement might be met with one of the following:
    1. an academic internship with a global focus (UNIV 398 International Supervised Internship, INST 397 Internship, SPAN 397 Internship); 
    2. an independent research project related to culture and communication in a global society  (INST 450, SPAN 491 or equivalent); or
    3. a study abroad experience with an IWU-approved program.


Additional Notes

Students with demonstrated intermediate language competence in Spanish (SPAN 203 or equivalent) might complete the experiential learning component requirement (number 3) by completing one of the following courses: Span 230: Medical Spanish and Cultural Competency for Health Care (U); Span 240: Spanish for Social Justice (U); or Span 250: Business Spanish and its Cultural Context (G).

Students in the Educational Studies-Teaching Licensure Program, might complete the experiential learning component requirement (number 3) by completing one of the Educational Studies-Student Teaching courses numbered 490-496 or the 497 Internship. 

The Intercultural Competence Academic Certificate was developed with support from the US Department of Education, Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Language (UISFL) grant.