Teaching Diverse Adult Learners


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New, improved, updated version just uploaded! This introductory 2.5-hour seminar is presented regularly to groups of instructors at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies on teaching to a multicultural audience. I use a cultural competence framework to approach the topic.

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  • No guilt – Please do not feel guilty about opinions you have formed on the topics being presented. No blame – Please do not assign blame if things are not perfect in your life or the organization you work for. Diversity and Inclusion is a journey and is ongoing in its implementation. If you want to teach these concepts to others, approach it as “here’s some helpful info I learned to help me be more effective”, rather than trying to correct someone.No political correctness – Please continue to speak in your own voice. There is no “right way” to say anything. Often political correctness can be a barrier to open communication.Open and honest – We want to encourage you to say what you feel without feeling you have to censor yourself. And be willing to clarify and discuss your point of view with others.
  • There is no need to feel bad about where you started or where you are now. Rejoice in the fact that you are on your way.
  • Personality: We are born with our personality and have little control over it.It is very individualized.Internal Dimension: This circlerepresents those visible differences we have little control over.External Dimensions: These aspects are virtually invisible to others. We tend to have more control over them. Organizational Dimensions: The aspectsin this circlespeak to workplace characteristics.The Four Circles of Diversity influence how we see the world and each other. There are aspects of your Diversity that are known to yourself and other people but they can also create blind spots that influence how you see others. Each aspect brings opportunity along with it – additional information and skills as well as opportunities for misperception if we fail to recognize and acknowledge how each circle is important to ourselves and to others.
  • These are just a sample of the many ways we can identify ourselves that have cultural implications. Add as many others as you can think of.Think about the values, beliefs, and norms of behaviour in each of those groups as the culture of the group. Think about the extent to which you have internalized some of these group values and norms. You can see how complex your own cultural identity is.
  • Teaching Diverse Adult Learners

    1. 1. Teaching Diverse Adult Learners Cathy Gallagher-Louisy Director, Community Partnerships and Knowledge Services Canadian Institute of Diversity and Inclusion cathy.gallagherlouisy@cidi-icdi.ca
    2. 2. Ground Rules No guilt No blame No political correctness Open and honest
    3. 3. Agenda for Today’s Session Activity Intro Icebreaker. Have fun with it! Understanding our Challenges and Clarifying Terminology Activity Understanding the Complexity of Your Cultural Identity Theory Introduction to Dimensions of Culture Activities Coat of Arms & Cultural Orientation Assessment Practical Tips, Tools, and Techniques for Teaching to a Multicultural Audience Activity How Will I Apply These Concepts?
    4. 4. Activity Icebreaker
    5. 5. Challenges to be Addressed What are the major challenges of teaching to a diverse group?
    6. 6. Video Awareness Test http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ahg6qcgoay4
    7. 7. Terminology Crosscultural Competence Cross-cultural Competence Cross cultural competence
    8. 8. Terminology Crosscultural Competence
    9. 9. Defining Crosscultural Competence Individual Crosscultural Competence: The ability to discern and take into account one’s own and others’ worldviews to be able to: • communicate effectively • solve problems • make decisions • resolve conflicts …in ways that optimize cultural differences. . Source: Hewitt Associates
    10. 10. Defining Crosscultural Competence Organizational Crosscultural Competence Five essential elements: 1. Valuing diversity 2. Having the capacity for cultural self-assessment 3. Being conscious of the dynamics inherent when cultures interact 4. Having institutionalized cultural knowledge 5. Having developed adaptations to service delivery reflecting an understanding of cultural diversity. Source: Cross et al 1989
    11. 11. Definition: Worldview, Values and Culture Worldview: 1. The overall perspective from which one sees and interprets the world. 2. A collection of beliefs about life and the universe held by an individual or a group. Values: Personal and group beliefs of what is right and wrong. Culture: Behavioral interpretation of how a community lives out its values in order to survive and thrive.
    12. 12. Components of Crosscultural Competence Crosscultural competence is comprised of four components: a) Awareness of one's own cultural worldview, b) Attitude towards cultural differences, c) Knowledge of different cultural practices and worldviews, and d) Crosscultural skills
    13. 13. You Don’t Have To Be An Expert “To be culturally effective doesn’t mean you are an authority in the values and beliefs of every culture. What it means is that you hold a deep respect for cultural differences and are eager to learn, and willing to accept, that there are many ways of viewing the world.” -Okokon U. Odo
    14. 14. Iceberg Model of Culture Clothing Art  Music  Language Greetings  Food & Drink  Flags Manners  Rituals  Outward Behaviours
    15. 15. Iceberg Model of Culture Clothing Art  Music  Language Greetings  Food & Drink  Flags Manners  Rituals  Outward Behaviours Attitudes  Values  Beliefs  Perceptions + Orientation to: Respect  Power  Social Status  Individualism  Community Competitiveness  Action  Environment  Communication Emotions  Thinking  Structure  Time  Space  Friendship Modesty  Fairness  Expectations  Etiquette  Perceptions Assumptions  Thought Processes  Parenting  Cleanliness Notions of ‘self’  Attitudes Toward Age  Gender Roles Leadership Styles  Learning Styles  Body Language Approaches to Problem Solving
    16. 16. You Are On a Developmental Journey
    17. 17. Intercultural Development Continuum Source: Dr. Mitch Hammer, IDI LLC, as adapted from Dr. Milton Bennett’s Developmental Model of Intercultural Sensitivity
    18. 18. Four Circles of Diversity Source: Gardenswartz & Rowe, 1994
    19. 19. Activity Understanding the complexity of your cultural identity Why do we need to understand ourselves?
    20. 20. Activity Understanding the complexity of your cultural identity Why do we need to understand ourselves? We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are. -Anais Nin
    21. 21. Activity Understanding the complexity of your cultural identity On a piece of paper, identify as many of these as you can… What is your: Religion • Nationality • Ethnicity • Sexual identity • Occupation • Marital status • Age • Geographic region • Highest level of education • Are you: Female or male • Disabled • From an urban area • From a rural area • From a suburban area • A parent • A student • An immigrant • A union member • An athlete • Have you ever been: In the military • Poor • In the working class • In the middle class • Wealthy • In prison • Unemployed • A member of an association •
    22. 22. ! ¡
    23. 23. Video Assumptions and Crosscultural Communications http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_WAmt3cMdk
    24. 24. Dimensions of Culture
    25. 25. The Seven Cultural Dimensions Individualism vs. Communitarianism Universalism vs. Particularism Task vs. Relationship Achievement vs. Ascription • How see ourselves in relation to others? • How do we define what’s fair? • How do we get things done? • How do view status and hierarchy? Neutral vs. Affective • How do we manage emotions? Sequential Time vs. Synchronous Time • How do we define time? Internal Control vs. External Control Source: Fons Trompenaars and Charles Hampden -Turner • How do we manage our environment?
    26. 26. Cultural Generalizations - Archetypes central tendency of the distribution of population USA Individualism Japan Communitarianism Source: Milton J. Bennett
    27. 27. Cultural Generalizations - Archetypes Individualism Outliers Japan Communitarianism Source: Milton J. Bennett
    28. 28. Cultural Generalizations - Archetypes USA Outliers Individualism Communitarianism Source: Milton J. Bennett
    29. 29. Understanding Cultural Dimensions Individualism vs. Communitarianism INDIVIDUALISM COMMUNITARIANISM personal freedom and achievement • you make your own decisions • you must take care of yourself • How do we see ourselves in relation to others? • Countries: U.S., Canada, the U.K, Scandinavia, New Zealand, Australia and Switzerland Source: Fons Trompenaars and Charles Hampden-Turner group more important than the individual. • group provides help and safety, in exchange for loyalty • group always comes before the individual Countries: Latin-America, Africa, and Japan
    30. 30. Understanding Cultural Dimensions Universalism vs. Particularism UNIVERSALISM PARTICULARISM high importance on laws, rules, values, and obligations • rules come before relationships • How do we define what’s fair? • Countries: U.S., Canada, the U.K., the Netherlands, Germany, Scandinavia, New Zealand, Australia, and Switzerland Source: Fons Trompenaars and Charles Hampden-Turner circumstance and relationship dictates the application of rules • response to a situation may change, based on context Countries: Russia, China, and Latin-America
    31. 31. Understanding Cultural Dimensions Task vs. Relationship Orientation TASK ORIENTED work and personal lives separate • relationships don't have much of an impact on work objectives • people can work together without having a good relationship • Countries: U.S., Canada, the U.K., the Netherlands, Germany, Scandinavia, New Zealand, Australia, and Switzerland Source: Fons Trompenaars and Charles Hampden-Turner How do we get things done? RELATRIONSHIP ORIENTED good relationships are vital to meeting objectives • relationships the same, at work or in a social setting • spend time outside work hours with colleagues and clients • Countries: Argentina, Spain, Russia, India and China
    32. 32. Understanding Cultural Dimensions Achievement vs. Ascription ACHIEVEMENT you are what you do and what you have achieved • value performance, no matter who you are • Countries: U.S., Canada, Scandinavia, and Australia Source: Fons Trompenaars and Charles Hampden-Turner How do we view status and hierarchy? ASCRIPTION you should be valued for who you are • power, title, and position matter • roles define behavior • Countries: France, Italy, Japan, and Saudi Arabia
    33. 33. Understanding Cultural Dimensions Neutral vs. Affective NEUTRAL How do we manage emotions? AFFECTIVE / EMOTIONAL control emotions • reason influences actions far more than their feelings • don't reveal thoughts or feelings • Countries: U.K., Sweden, the Netherlands, Finland, and Germany Source: Fons Trompenaars and Charles Hampden-Turner express their emotions freely, even spontaneously, at work, in the classroom or in social situations. • emotion welcome and accepted • hiding emotions considered dishonest • Countries: Poland, Italy, France, Spain, and Latin America
    34. 34. Understanding Cultural Dimensions Sequential Time vs. Synchronous Time SEQUENTIAL TIME events happen in specific order • high value on punctuality, planning and staying on schedule • "time is money" • Countries: Japan, Canada, Norway, the U.K., and the U.S. Source: Fons Trompenaars and Charles Hampden-Turner How do we define time? SYNCHRONOUS TIME past, present, and future are interwoven • work on several projects at once • plans and commitments are flexible • Countries: China, Russia, and Mexico
    35. 35. Understanding Cultural Dimensions Internal Control vs. External Control INTERNAL DIRECTION aka internal “locus of control” • people can control nature or their environment to achieve goals • “master of my own destiny” • Countries: Israel, the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, and the U.K. Source: Fons Trompenaars and Charles Hampden-Turner How do we manage our environment? EXTERNAL DIRECTION aka external “locus of control” • nature, or their environment, controls them • work with their environment to achieve goals. • focus actions on others • “que sera sera” • “Insha'Allah” • Countries: China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia.
    36. 36. Activity Coat of Arms
    37. 37. Activity Assess Your Cultural Orientation
    38. 38. Tips, Tools, And Techniques
    39. 39. Test Your Own Biases You might be surprised https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/demo/takeatest.html http://isites.harvard.edu/fs/html/icb.topic58474/TFTrace.html http://teachingasleadership.org/sites/default/files/RelatedReadings/DCA_Ch5_2011.pdf
    40. 40. Tips for Developing Cultural Competence Goals: • develop an investigative, non-judgmental, “seek to understand” attitude toward all kinds of difference • challenge yourself to develop a higher tolerance for ambiguity • learn to understand the assumptions and values on which one’s own behavior rests
    41. 41. Inclusive Teaching Tips 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Be acutely aware of your own worldview and biases Assume that the students in your class have different cultural worldviews Make the invisible visible Respond immediately to biased or bigoted remarks, or gross generalizations and stereotypes Get to know your students as individuals Don’t ask students to speak for a whole group Incorporate diversity and diverse perspectives in your course planning
    42. 42. Inclusive Teaching Techniques 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Overcome communication barriers by presenting information in multiple formats Monitor student learning Help students anticipate exam questions Have students demonstrate their knowledge and skills in varied ways Provide clear performance expectations
    43. 43. Tips for Teaching Adult Learners 1. 2. 3. 4. Adult learners have expertise Adult learners are especially sensitive to slights Adult learners need to know why something is important to know Compared to the typical undergraduate, adult learners tend to be: a. More self-directed b. More likely to learn through experience
    44. 44. Activity How Will I Apply These Concepts? On a piece of paper, answer the following: 1. What was my biggest “ah hah moment” or key insight from today’s session? 2. What is one practical and achievable activity I can do in the next 30 days to increase my cultural understanding? 3. What three things will I do differently when teaching my classes?
    45. 45. Thank you! Contact me for more info on organizational diversity and inclusion strategies or cultural competence development. Cathy Gallagher-Louisy cathy.gallagherlouisy@cidi-icdi.ca www.cidi-icdi.ca ca.linkedin.com/in/cathygl @CatGL