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ERIC Number: EJ1123633
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Aug
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-2194-654X
The "U" Curve Hypothesis: A Framework for Making Sense of Learning to Teach in Diverse Settings
Birrell, James R.; Tinney, Mari Vawn
Multicultural Learning and Teaching, v3 n1 p28-48 Aug 2008
Experiences in this research study started in 1991 before many teacher educators were aware of the "?U"? curve hypothesis or predictable stages of culture shock and the recognizable stages used on the path to gaining intercultural competence. This study of student teachers is used here as an illustration of what happens when teachers are operating from various stages of ignorance or of cultural awareness and culturally responsive teaching. Because these stages are predictable, now in the 21st Century they can be taught to teachers as a guide in preparing and supporting all teachers or students anywhere in the country to recognize what stage they are at themselves during their experiences. Having multiple viewpoints of the same event, for example, aids educators in responding more effectively when they find themselves in culturally or educationally diverse situations or classrooms. We offer recommendations for new generations of teachers and older generation teachers (who may not realize where they are stuck) to identify the stages of intercultural competence in which they and others near them communicate and operate. Our approach for the some steps to the solution involves teaching educators an easy-to-remember 4-H phased view to the "?U?" curve stages: the honeymoon phase, hostility phase, humor phase, and the home phase.
De Gruyter. Available from: Walter de Gruyter, Inc. 121 High Street, Third Floor, Boston, MA 02110. Tel: 857-284-7073; Fax: 857-284-7358; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: District of Columbia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A