Diversity Enriched Course Process

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Intercultural Competence

Intercultural Competence (.pdf): the ability to understand and function effectively across cultures, think and adapt behavior appropriately, and communicate and work with people from different backgrounds. 


Faculty Expectations:
In order to teach a DE course, a faculty member should be committed to building their own intercultural competence and teaching with access and inclusion.

Intercultural Competence Outcomes

ACTION: Need to include at least two of the three — preferably all three — intercultural competency outcomes in course design, outlined below.

NOTE: Outcomes are interconnected, and it is common for one activity or assessment to address multiple outcomes.

Intercultural Competency Outcome 1Intercultural Competency Outcome 2Intercultural Competency Outcome 3
Cultural AwarenessNon-Judgmental ExaminationCritical Thinking
Recognize the existence of different views and experiences.Examine differences in a non-polarized/non-judgemental way (not ‘good’ or ‘bad’, just that is a difference) and ask why this difference exists. 

Students will be able to...

  • articulate the meaning of culture and that we are all cultural beings
  • articulate how one’s own culture has shaped one’s identity and worldview

Students will be able to…

  • observe and examine differences in others and in other cultures while refraining from snap judgments
  • examine their reaction to difference by considering their own cultural biases

Students will be able to…

  • critically think about and interpret issues from other cultural points of view
  • respectfully integrate these different perspectives to create solutions/make change
Learn more about cultural awareness.

Learn more about non-judgmental examination.


Learn more about critical thinking.


CFANS activity and assignment examples for cultural awareness (.doc).CFANS activity and assignment examples of non-judgmental thinking (.doc).CFANS activity and assignment examples for critical thinking (.doc).


Optional Intercultural Competence Outcomes

OPTIONAL: Include any or all of the following Intercultural Competence Outcomes.

Optional Intercultural Competence OutcomesSkills
(1) Culture specific knowledge
  • use ability to analyze and explain basic information about other cultures
(2) Sociolinguistic awareness
  • use of different verbal/non-verbal communication, and adjusting one’s speech to accommodate persons from other cultures
(3) Grasp of global issues and trends
  • explain the meanings and implications of living in a global community, and relate local issues to global forces
(4) Identify similarities and comfortably move constructively within critical differences
  • demonstrate empathy within critical differences
  • communicate in ways that others understand within critical differences
(5) Use reflective listening and curiosity
  • use patience and perseverance to identify and minimize ethnocentrism
  • seek out cultural clues and meaning
(6) Analyze, interpret and relate
  • seek out linkages, causality and relationships using comparative techniques of analysis
(7) Respect: seek out others’ cultural attributes
  • value cultural diversity of people and experiences
  • think comparatively and without prejudice about cultural differences
(8) Openness: suspend generalizations about other cultures and people
  • collect ‘evidence’ of cultural difference
  • show openness to being proven wrong
(9) Curiosity: seek out intercultural interactions
  • view difference as a learning opportunity
  • being aware of one’s own ignorance
(10) Discovery: tolerate ambiguity and view it as a positive experience 
  • willingness to move beyond one’s comfort zone

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Using the DE Course Elements

  1. Intercultural outcomes (minimum 2 out of 3)
    1. Cultural Awareness
    2. Non-Judgmental Examination
    3. Critical Thinking
  2. Universal Design following that includes accessibility and a minimum of 2 of the following DE elements
    1. Inclusive Syllabus 
    2. Multiple engaging learning and teaching strategies; 
    3. Multiple assessment formats
  3. Describe other diversity or intercultural enrichments in the course experience that support diversity enrichment. 

Developing an Inclusive Syllabus

Checklist for designing an inclusive syllabus

Multiple engaging learning and teaching strategies



  • Think-Pair-Share, Muddiest Point, jigsaw, case studies, application activities, compare & contrast perspectives activities, critical reflection opportunities, cooperative and collaborative projects, work groups, study groups, discussion groups, frequent student-teacher interaction, etc.
  • Critical reflection strategies to allow students to learn about individual differences and reflect on their own assumptions and beliefs (i.e., journals, five-minute write, etc.)
  • High impact practices: service learning, community engagement, panel presentation, internship, study abroad, etc.

Multiple assessment formats



  • Projects, presentations, group assessments, portfolios, papers, rubrics, exhibits, posters, demonstrations, multiple drafts for students to demonstrate learning progress prior to final grading, etc.