ANDREW REIMANN -
RAISING CULTURAL AWARENESS IN EFL THROUGH ACTIVE LEARNING : INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION
This presentation focusses on practical cultural learning, to raise student’s awareness and develop intercultural communicative competence. Methods for applying teacher generated materials and fostering autonomous learning will be described. The presenter will demonstrate how teachers can create materials for practical language and culture learning. Teacher generated materials are essential for democratizing EFL education and developing the skills of EFL learners. Cultural knowledge is ambiguous and context specific. For cultural content to be practical, teachers should tailor materials for their own, unique environments. Considering critical incidents, students engage and explore other cultures. As students are free to shape their perspectives, they can reach a neutral position, from which to objectively observe differences, create their own unique, worldview, becoming more open-minded and empathetic communicators. Approaching difference as a resource rather than as a barrier, through observation, participation, interaction and reflection, learners develop their own worldviews and the skills required to communicate effectively.
REIMANN Andrew is from Vancouver, Canada and teaches Communication at Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo. His research interests are in sociolinguistics, and intercultural communication. His classes focus on developing cultural awareness and global understanding by looking at examples in language, religion, culture and media. Publications include The Culture Studies Handbook.