Integrating intercultural competence in course curricula in a tailored way

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This concept paper outlines the steps in a process to integrate intercultural competence (IC) into course curricula in a way that is tailored to the program and course outcomes. The paper also provides guidelines and examples for how this could be implemented on the level of teaching, task and text design, and sequencing. Internationalised education has prompted an increased focus on developing global citizenship, a main tenet of which is a move from a one-sided integrative model of education to an inclusive one that values students as participants. One component of this is enhancing IC. With the help of Deardorff’s (2006) model of IC conceptualised as a process, this paper identifies the aspects of IC (e.g. awareness, behaviour) relevant to a course to audit its existing curriculum, and it provides examples for task development to address various levels of cognitive engagement. Through a focus on a university pathway context, the paper presents the steps used to identify the salient aspects of IC relevant to the given curriculum, provides guiding questions to audit an existing curriculum, gives examples for staged task design and considers potential assessment areas. The process outlined is applicable for English as a Second Language (ESL), English as a Foreign Language (EFL), Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) and discipline-specific curricula for student cohorts with or without Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) students.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26-38
Number of pages13
JournalEnglish Australia Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • intercultural competence
  • international education


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