Course Number: PAS 405
Course Title: Intercultural Competencies
Dr. Sebastian Mahfood, OP firstname.lastname@example.org 860-632-3085
1. Course Description
This course will explore the nature of intercultural competencies and engage the learner in methods concerning their development and cultivation within a community of faith.
2. Envisioned Learning Outcomes
- Students will develop the ability to articulate an understanding of the Church’s mission and identity in terms of evangelization and its relation to the New Evangelization.
- Students will develop a familiarity with the basic elements of evangelization in terms of “four pillars” and examples of how evangelization engages individuals and cultures in today’s world.
- Students will strengthen their grasp of the theological foundations for the Church’s mission to evangelize in Scripture, tradition and contemporary Church teaching.
- Students will define culture and identify ways in which culture influences communication.
- Students will demonstrate an understanding of how cultures differ beneath the surface and how cultures respond differently to similar situations.
- Students will create a framework of ideas that can be applied to understanding the major concepts of intercultural communication.
- Students will develop practical knowledge about intercultural communications in pastoral settings.
- Students will demonstrate an increased awareness of how to communicate effectively with persons and groups in cultures other than their own.
- Students will learn demonstrate an ability to use modes of communication that are proper to the culture being addressed.
- Students will lead, discuss and make decisions using culturally appropriate processes with intercultural groups.
- Students will demonstrate an ability to apply basic skills in conflict resolution.
- Students will demonstrate an increased awareness of the presence of racism in intercultural relationships and how it affects those relationships.
- Students will demonstrate an increased knowledge and understanding of racism.
- Students will demonstrate a renewed willingness to confront their own experiences of racism.
- Students will demonstrate an ability to acknowledge and own their own feelings about racism.
- Students will demonstrate a strengthened resolve to find their voice to speak out against racism.
- Students will demonstrate a clear understanding of the principle of ecclesial integration versus assimilation.
- Students will demonstrate an ability to identify different parish models in the context of cultural diversity and a spirituality of mission and reconciliation.
- Students will demonstrate an ability to apply the developmental process of ecclesial integration and its five principles to their own parish or Catholic institution.
3. Course Schedule
Week 1: Introduction to Culture and Intercultural Competencies
- Introduction to Intercultural Competencies. Framing Issues of Diversity Theologically in Terms of the Church’s Identity and Mission to Evangelize.
- Building Intercultural Competencies for Ministers, pp. ix-5.
- Deck, Allen. “Intercultural Competence: The Opportunities and Challenges of the Present Reality.” Seminary Journal.
- Boal. Theatre of the Oppressed. Chapter 1: “Aristotle’s Coercive System of Tragedy.”
- "One Church Many Cultures: The Good News of Cultural Diversity" - a newsletter of the USCCB Secretariat of Cultural Diversity in the Church
- Introduce self on discussion board: who are you, and what has prompted your interest in this class?
- Live webinar on the nature of intercultural competencies. Discussion.
Week 2: Interactive Theatre as a Role-Playing Method
- What interactive theatre has to teach us about intercultural engagement.
- Boal. Theatre of the Oppressed. Chapter 3: “Hegel and Brecht: The Character as Subject or the Character as Object.”
Discuss how you see the four pillars of evangelization playing out in your own ministry.
- Conversion: a personal encounter with Jesus Christ
- The evangelization of cultures: the encounter between a people’s rituals, symbols, and myths (narratives) and the Gospel, leading to the transformation of culture (inculturation)
- Liberation: the transformation of social, economic, and political orders in light of gospel values of life and human dignity
- Ecumenical and interreligious dialogue: work to bring about the unity of all peoples in pursuit of Jesus’ mandate
Week 3: Storyboarding
- The nature of storyboarding in our developing a method for critical engagement.
- Boal. Theatre of the Oppressed. Chapter 4: “Poetics of the Oppressed” and Chapter 5: “Development of the Arena Theater of Sao Paulo.”
Choose one of the passages below. How do you see it relating to evangelization today? Storyboard an example.
Week 4: Part II: Seeking an Understanding of Culture and How it Works
- The Nature of Culture and Inculturation
- Building Intercultural Competencies for Ministers, pp. 6-14.
- Cultural Diversity in the Catholic Church in the United States - CARA, June 2014
- Live webinar on Culture. Discussion.
Week 5: From Storyboarding to Scripting
- Culture Matters: The Peace Corps Cross-Cultural Workbook.
- Explain the significance to you of the italicized part of this quote below and develop a script for a cultural event.
"Culture is the particular way in which a human group interprets life and relates with nature, God, the world, and other peoples. Culture is not accidental, but an integral part of human life. Culture is lived and expressed through traditions, languages, relationships, food, music, and religious expressions. It embraces the totality of life of the group and the life of each individual who belongs to it; therefore, all human beings relate and respond to God and express this faith from and within their culture." - Principles for Inculturation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Department of Education, USCCB
Week 6: From Scripting to Acting
- Engaging the parameters of cultural interaction
- Mahfood, Sebastian. “Inculturating Islam.” Social Justice Review.
The five parameters of interacting with other cultures are listed in the module as follows. Choose one and describe a situation you experienced in your own pastoral setting that can be explained by the parameter. How did you handle the situation then? How would you handle it now that you've been provided a rationale for its occurrence? Script the event for presentation to the class.
- Parameter 1: Collectivism versus Individualism
- Parameter 2: Hierarchy versus Equality
- Parameter 3: Low Tolerance of Ambiguity versus High Tolerance of Ambiguity
- Parameter 4: A Masculine versus a Feminine Understanding of Gender Roles
- Parameter 5: Lived-Experience versus Abstract Time Orientation
Week 7: Part III: Developing Intercultural Communication Skills in Pastoral Settings
- What is an Individualist Culture? What is a Collectivist Culture?
- Building Intercultural Competencies for Ministers, pp. 15-20.
- Video: Many Faces in God’s House
- Live webinar on intercultural communication skills. Discussion: Looking at the chart explaining some differences between collectivist and individualist cultures, discuss the implications of these differences for what you saw in the videos "Many Faces in God's House."
Week 8: Intra- and Interaction between Individualist Cultures and Collectivist Cultures
- How do these two types of cultures engage one another? Interact with each other?
- Watch the interview entitled "Stella Ting-Toomey on Face-Negotiation Theory," the video entitled "Understanding China: Face," and the video entitled, "The Importance of 'Face' in China - Rupert Munton - ClarkMorgan Insights." We have here three nuances on the definition of "face" as communication identity, role and reputation. Discuss how these definitions help you understand what's going on in your parish among collectivist cultures. How do they help you problematize an individualistic culture?
Week 9: Developing our Semester Project
- Applications for our own ministerial settings
- Script a scenario in your own ministerial setting beginning with two persons from the two types of cultures: individualist and collectivist. This should be based upon a ministerial situation that you’ve experienced involving a misunderstanding based on the differences between cultures. We’ll call this Script A. Your script shouldn’t resolve the issue – only present it. As a group over the remainder of the course, we’ll discuss other persons who might come into the situation to resolve it.
Week 10: Part IV: Expanding Knowledge of the Obstacles that Impede Effective Intercultural Relations
- Building Intercultural Competencies for Ministers, pp. 21-25.
- Brothers and Sisters to Us: Bishops’s Pastoral Statements on Racism.
Suggested Reading over the next three weeks:
- Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison. (Available in course site.)
- Live webinar on our obstacles. Discussion: In light of Acts 2:1-12 and Galatians 2:11-21, discuss this statement: "The plurality of racial groups in U.S. society will require a pluricultural lens to build the bridges of interculturality."
Week 11: Understanding Racism inherent in Every Culture
- In what way are cultures and the individuals who comprise them even inadvertently racist?
- Go to YouTube.com and find a clip from a popular film that deals with prejudice or racism. Post the link and discuss in light of the message provided in this module. Script out the problem statement and its resolution in your own ministerial setting.
Week 12: Rescripting Script A.
- Return to Script A. How do we problematize the racism inherent within it? What other characters are necessary? Develop the script and share. We’ll call the new script Script B.
Week 13: Part V: Fostering Ecclesial Integration Rather Than Assimilation in Church Settings with a Spirituality of Hospitality, Reconciliation, and Mission
- What does ecclesial integration mean?
- Building Intercultural Competencies for Ministers, pp. 26-33.
- Live webinar on fostering ecclesial integration. The foundational stages in the larger process of ecclesial integration are as follows. Discuss what they mean in terms of your own parish context. How are they working out? What more needs to be done?
- Movement 1: Reach Out and Meet People Where They Are
- Movement 2: Demonstrate Hospitality and Make People Feel at Home
- Movement 3: Organize by Developing Ministries and Ministers
- Movement 4: Build Relationships across Cultures and Ministries
- Movement 5: Champion Leadership Development and Formation
- Movement 6: Open Wide the Doors to the Decision-Making Process
- Movement 7: Strengthen a Sense of Ownership
- Movement 8: Sow and Reap Full Ownership and Stewardship
- Movement 9: Achieve Full Commitment to the Mission of the Parish
- The Five Principles for Achieving Ecclesial Integration.
- The Five Principles for Achieving Ecclesial Integration and Inclusion are as follows. In conversation with the leaders in your parish among whom may already be included persons from different cultural backgrounds, develop a plan to demonstrate how these principles can be applied within your ecclesial setting.
- Articulate a vision of ministry based on ecclesial integration and inclusion.
- Foster the inculturation of the Gospel in all cultures.
- Plan with the people, not for the people.
- Broaden your understanding of ministry groups, programs, and structures, and cast a bigger net.
- Empower people from different cultures and ethnicities into leadership positions.
Week 15: Rescripting Script B. Coming to a resolution within our ministerial contexts.
- Rescripting Script B. Develop a possible resolution of the script for sharing with others. We’ll call this script Script C. Final performance of the script among the group.
4. COURSE REQUIREMENTS
- Discussion Postings – 40%
- Semester Project – 20%
- Course Activities – 40%
Semester Project – Incremental due dates (see below)
Concerning the semester project, the following schedule applies:
- Completion of Script A – End of Week 9.
- Completion of Script B – End of Week 12.
- Completion of Script C – End of Week 15.
5. REQUIRED READINGS and RESOURCES:
USCCB. Office of Cultural Diversity. Building Intercultural Competence for Ministers. Workbook available online at http://www.usccbpublishing.org/productdetails.cfm?sku=7-301 ISBN: 978-1-60137-301-4. $9.95.
- Boal, Augusto. Theatre of the Oppressed. New York: Theatre Communications Group. 1985. ISBN-13: 978-1-559367-78-3. $13.04.
6. SUGGESTED READINGS and RESOURCES:
Supplemental readings will be provided based on the intercultural work done through the Seminary Department of the National Catholic Educational Association and the Parresia Project of the Sacred Heart Institute.
- Lumen Gentium - Vatican II (November 21, 1964)
- Ad Gentes: On the Mission Activity of the Church - Vatican II (December 7, 1965)
- Evangelii Nuntiandi - Pope Paul VI (December 8, 1975)
- Redemptoris Missio: On the permanent validity of the Church's missionary mandate by Saint John Paul II (December 7, 1990)
- "Peace, our Hope" - Pope Benedict XVI on April 17, 2008, to the USCCB in Washington, DC
- USCCB New Evangelization, "What is the New Evangelization?"
- Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evanglization
- Go and Make Disciples: A National Plan and Strategy for Catholic Evangelization in the United States
- Vayan y Hagan Discípulos: Plan y Estrategia Nacional para la Evangelización Católica en los Estados
- Culture Matters: The Peace Corps Cross-Cultural Workbook
- Gaudium et Spes (Vatican II, December 7, 1965)
- Rerum Novarum: On Capital and Labor (Pope Leo XIII, May 15, 1891)
- Quadragesimo Anno: On the Fortieth Anniversary of Rerum Novarum (Pope Pius XI, May 15, 1931)
- Popularum Progressio: On the Development of Peoples (Pope Paul VI, March 26, 1967)
- Centesimus Annus: On the Hundredth Anniversary of Rerum Novarum (Pope John Paul II, May 1, 1991)
- Ellison, Ralph. Invisible Man. [available as a PDF in the course site]
Students who have difficulty with research and composition are encouraged to pursue assistance with the Online Writing Lab (available at http://www.holyapostles.edu/owl).
A 94-100; A- 90-93; B+ 87-89; B 84-86; B- 80-83; C+ 77-79; C 74-76; C- 70-73 D 60-69; F 59 and below
Grading Rubric for the Major Papers and Discussion Board (DB) Postings
Absence of Understanding
Posting shows no awareness of the concepts addressed in the topic by shifting off-topic
Posting demonstrates a misunderstanding of the basic concepts addressed in the topic through an inability to re-explain them
Posting demonstrates an adequate understanding of the basic concepts addressed in the topic by a re-explanation of them
Posting demonstrates an understanding of the basic concepts addressed in the topic and uses that understanding effectively in the examples it provides
Posting demonstrates an understanding of the basic concepts of the topic through the use of examples and by making connections to other concepts
WRITING & EXPRESSION
Posting is only partially written or fails to address the topic
Writing difficult to understand, serious improvement needed
Posting touches only on the surface of the topic and proceeds to talk about something else; confusing organization or development; little elaboration of position; insufficient control of sentence structure and vocabulary; unacceptable number of errors in grammar, mechanics, and usage
Acceptable writing, but could use some sharpening of skill
Posting is an uneven response to parts of the topic; somewhat conventional treatment; satisfactory organization, but more development needed; adequate syntax and diction, but could use more vigor; overall control of grammar, mechanics, and usage, but some errors
Solid writing with something interesting to say
Posting is an adequate response to the topic; some depth and complexity in treatment; persuasive organization and development, with suitable reasons and examples; level-appropriate syntax and diction; mastery of grammar, mechanics, and usage, with hardly any error
command-level writing, making a clear impression
Posting is a thorough response to the topic; thoughtful and insightful examination of issues; compelling organization and development ; superior syntax and diction; error-free grammar, mechanics, and usage
Paper shows no evidence of research: citation of sources missing.
Inadequate research and/or documentation
Over-reliance on few sources; spotty documentation of facts in text; pattern of citation errors.
Weak research and/or documentation
Inadequate number or quality of sources; many facts not referenced; several errors in citation format.
Adequate research and documentation but needs improvement
Good choice of sources but could be improved with some additions or better selection; did not always cite sources.
Solid research and documentation
A number of relevant scholarly sources revealing solid research; sources appropriately referenced in paper; only a few minor citation errors.
COMMUNITY INTERACTION (50-word response)
Response merely provides laudatory encouragement for original post, e.g., “Excellent post! You really have thought of something there.”
Response misses the point of the original posting or merely summarizes original posting to which it responds.
Response makes a contribution to the posting to which it responds.
Individually-conscious contributory response
Response makes a contribution to the posting to which it responds and fosters its development.
Community-conscious contributory response
Response makes a contribution to the learning community and fosters its development.
8. DISABILITIES ACCOMMODATIONS POLICY
Holy Apostles College & Seminary is committed to the goal of achieving equal educational opportunities and full participation in higher education for persons with disabilities who qualify for admission to the College. Students enrolled in online courses who have documented disabilities requiring special accommodations should contact Bob Mish, the Director of Online Student Affairs, at email@example.com or 860-632-3015. In all cases, reasonable accommodations will be made to ensure that all students with disabilities have access to course materials in a mode in which they can receive them. Students who have technological limitations (e.g., slow Internet connection speeds in convents) are asked to notify their instructors the first week of class for alternative means of delivery.
9. ACADEMIC HONESTY POLICY
Students at Holy Apostles College & Seminary are expected to practice academic honesty.
In its broadest sense, plagiarism is using someone else's work or ideas, presented or claimed as your own. At this stage in your academic career, you should be fully conscious of what it means to plagiarize. This is an inherently unethical activity because it entails the uncredited use of someone else's expression of ideas for another's personal advancement; that is, it entails the use of a person merely as a means to another person’s ends. Plagiarism includes: 1. Directly quoting without acknowledging the source. 2. Changing a few words of a text without indicating this was done and/or not acknowledging the source. 3. Not acknowledging that the structure of ideas or logic is from another author. 4. Not acknowledging a unique image (including analogies, similes, metaphors etc.) is from a particular document or author.
Students, where applicable:
Should identify the title, author, page number/webpage address, and publication date of works when directly quoting small portions of texts, articles, interviews, or websites.
Students should not copy more than two paragraphs from any source as a major component of papers or projects.
Should appropriately identify the source of information when paraphrasing (restating) ideas from texts, interviews, articles, or websites.
Should follow the Holy Apostles College & Seminary Stylesheet (available on the Online Writing Lab’s website at http://www.holyapostles.edu/owl/resources).
Consequences of Academic Dishonesty:
Because of the nature of this class, academic dishonesty is taken very seriously. Students caught plagiarizing will receive a zero for the assignment, and may be withdrawn from the class and/or expelled from Holy Apostles.
10. ATTENDANCE POLICY
Even though you are not required to be logged in at any precise time or day, you are expected to login several times during each week. Because this class is being taught entirely in a technology-mediated forum, it is important to actively participate each week in the course. In a traditional classroom setting for a 3-credit course, students would be required, per the federal standards, to be in class three 50-minute sessions (or 2.5 hours a week) and prepare for class discussions six 50-minute sessions (or 5 hours) a week. Expect to devote at least nine 50-minute sessions (or 7.5 quality hours) a week to this course. A failure on the student’s part to actively participate in the life of the course may result in a reduction of the final grade.
11. INCOMPLETE POLICY
Students who have completed little or no coursework are ineligible for an “Incomplete” in a course. An instructor may grant an incomplete to a student who:
- has satisfactorily completed major components of the course; and
- has the ability to finish the remaining work without re-enrolling; and
- has encountered extenuating circumstances, such as illness or family emergencies, that prevent him or her from finishing coursework prior to the last day of the semester.
An “I” for “Incomplete” is a temporary grade assigned at the discretion of the instructor.
A student seeking an Incomplete should obtain the Incomplete form from the shared folder of the files tab in Populi or from the Associate Registrar’s office. The student will fill out the parts of the form pertaining to the student and submit the form to the instructor before the end of the semester.
If the instructor approves the Incomplete, the instructor fills out the section of the Incomplete form indicating what the student must do to finish the course and signs the form.
The instructor of an online class sends the approved form to the Assistant Registrar for online learning; the instructor of an on-campus class sends the form to the Associate Registrar for on-campus learning. The instructor also sends a copy of the completed Incomplete form to the student.
Students receiving an Incomplete (I) must submit the missing course work by the end of the sixth week following the semester in which they were enrolled. An incomplete grade administratively turns into the grade of “F” for “Fail” if the course work is not completed by the end of the sixth week.
- Other Results for Insufficiently Completing a Course
“W” for “Withdrawal” will appear on the student’s permanent record for any course dropped after the end of the first week of a semester to the end of the third week.
Absent the granting of an “I” for Incomplete, “WF” for “Withdrawal/Fail” will appear on the student’s permanent record for any course dropped after the end of the third week of a semester and on or before the Friday before the last week of the semester.
A student who does not complete sufficient coursework to pass a course and does not request a W or a WF will receive an F as the final course grade.
12. ABOUT YOUR PROFESSOR
Dr. Sebastian Mahfood, OP, Vice-President of Administration at Holy Apostles College & Seminary, is a Lay Dominican of the Chapter of the Holy Rosary in the Central Province of St. Albert the Great. Dr. Mahfood holds a master’s in comparative literature from the University of Texas at Arlington, a master’s in philosophy and a master’s in theology from Holy Apostles College & Seminary, a master’s in educational technology from Webster University and a doctorate in postcolonial literature and theory from Saint Louis University. Among his publications include his book Radical Eschatologies: Embracing the Eschaton in the Works of Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Nuruddin Farah, and Ayi Kwei Armah. He lives in St. Louis with his wife, Dr. Stephanie Mahfood, and children, Alexander and Eva Ruth.