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ERIC Number: EJ883694
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 23
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 46
ISSN: ISSN-1085-4568
Transcending the Culturalist Impasse in Stays Abroad: Helping Mobile Students to Appreciate Diverse Diversities
Dervin, Fred
Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, v18 p119-141 Fall 2009
Study abroad is often referred to, first and foremost, as an intercultural experience during which "cultures" are encountered and for which mobile students should be prepared. This article, which is based on research carried out on various aspects of student mobility in Europe, and more precisely in Finland, aims to go beyond the "myths" related to study abroad and examine how mobile students can develop competences that can aid them when dealing with various aspects of the experience. This article also calls for a change in the manner in which people consider intercultural communication, by adopting an approach which concentrates solely on the analysis of identity (co-)construction--a key element in the development of noticing strategies used by interlocutors to "dramatize themselves." Based on a model of intercultural competences called proteophilic competences, this article demonstrates how the model can be applied and used by students to go from the "commodification of intercultural understanding" to the appreciation of one's own diversity and that of others. The article is divided into three sections. The first section attempts to contextualize student mobility in Europe, and more specifically Finland by presenting analogies between the students' experiences and experiences in our contemporary world. The second section is devoted to the definition and justification of proteophilic competences that can help students go beyond misconceptions about their time in Finland. The final section looks at the outcome of a course on intercultural communication with exchange students in Finland, which was developed using this method. The overall objective of the article is to show the potential impact of the model on the manner in which exchange students see and talk about themselves and otherness. (Contains 9 notes.)
Frontiers Journal. Dickinson College P.O. Box 1773, Carlisle, PA 17013. Tel: 717-254-8858; Fax: 717-245-1677; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Finland