Cross Cultural Experience
The best way to learn any subject is to experience it. To this point in the course you have learned a good deal of theory related to culture and communication, and have had the opportunity to dialogue with one another on these two topics, but now it is time to experience what it means to communicate with someone from another culture.
In your community, locate someone who is from another culture other than Canadian (in this case we are not talking about work cultures but rather ethnic culture) who has moved to Canada in his or her generation (in other words, recent enough that he or she can remember the immigration experience). This person can be an existing friend or an acquaintance that you have had brief encounters with in the past (a shop keeper, someone who works in your bank, someone you know from school, etc.). It is best that the person not be a relative should you have one who fits the assignment description.
Plan to meet with the person you have identified from another culture (it may take more than one or two meetings to explore their culture in some detail) in an informal setting if possible. Explain in advance to the person you have identified for you Cross Cultural Experience that you are in this course and that you would like to chat with them about their culture for the purpose of completing a course assignment (most people are sympathetic to students with an assignment). Through the use of a journal ask or experience the following questions and record them in your journal (try not to make the experience sound too much like an interview, but rather a collegial dialogue intended to get to know one another better):
• What culture and/or ethnic background did the person originally come from?
• Why did he or she choose Canada as place to immigrate to?
• What difficulties did he or she encounter on arrival in Canada?
• Was language/communication a barrier and if so, how did he or she overcome this barrier?
• Has he or she experience cultural prejudice since arriving in Canada and if so in what form?
• How difficult was it for him or her to secure employment? Was it the job he or she had hoped for?
• What would he or she consider their greatest challenge living in Canada as an immigrant?
• What are the major differences between this person’s culture and that of main stream Canadians?
• During the time you spend with this person, make a mental note and record later in your journal their body language, unique gestures, ability to communicate with you in English, their ability to understand you in communication, any other aspects of this person that makes them unique to Canadian society (remember here we want to be very respectful of this person and not make him or her feel uncomfortable).
Record any other aspect of your time with this person that you found noteworthy. Think or what you have learned on this course to date and bring that knowledge to bear in getting to know this person and his or her culture better. Remember, you want to communicate and gain insight into another culture, not simply fulfill the requirements of this assignment.
Once you are satisfied you have experienced another culture and have found sufficient information to address the questions in the task section of this assignment and anything else that comes to mind in getting to know this person, transfer the contents of your notes into a proper essay format based on what you learned in Lesson #1. Be sure to include and properly cite at least two references to the course notes (topics you consulted in preparing your essay and interview) in the essay. The essay is to be no more than four (4) pages double spaced (excluding references and cover page if used) using Times Roman, 12 pt font. The essay is to have an Introduction introducing the person you interviewed for this assignment and a Conclusion summarizing what you learned from this assignment
This assignment is worth 18% of your final grade. Marks will be awarded as follows:
• 3 Marks for Grammatical Structure and proper references.
• 15 Marks for Content and completeness of the assignment in addressing the assignment questions.