Developing Intercultural Competence and Language Skills Through International Online Collaborative Learning

Rieko Saito (Dalarna University, Sweden), Masako Hayakawa Thor (Dalarna University, Sweden) and Hiroko Inose (Dalarna University, Sweden)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 327
EISBN13: 9781522550600|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2724-4.ch013
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Abstract

Raising the intercultural competence of learners has been one of the most important issues in language education in this global world, but how can we integrate intercultural education into our teaching? This chapter introduces two online exchange projects, one for the beginner level and one for the intermediate level, which were designed for Swedish learners of Japanese as a means to develop their intercultural competence through collaborative language learning. The projects were designed through collaboration between five universities in Europe and Asia. In this chapter, the authors explore how the intercultural competence of learners developed based on learners' reflections after each session and their answers in the questionnaire after the project. The study finds that the different language levels require teachers to take different approaches in designing the intercultural contents of the projects. The chapter ends with further discussions on how to design intercultural education in an online environment.
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