CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS Education for Cross-Cultural Competence-potentials, challenges and its limits Starting Cross-cultural Competence with Identity Awareness

Judith Mckimm-Vorderwinkler, Ma
This paper presents observations made to date of a new didactical approach based on identity awareness and its implications on the perception and interaction with cultural difference. Given the flaws of the "cultural teaching"approach, the idea is that starting from the Self, i.e. the awareness about one's own identity as a whole may be conducive to creating the necessary groundwork for acquiring intercultural competence. The method has so far been applied to postgraduate students of a variety
more » ... dents of a variety of disciplines and medical professionals during a module in Creative Difference. Although intercultural competence as such is a lateral focus in this particular module, the cultural aspect of student's identity has invariably emerged as a central point and has been given particular didactical attention. The students' assignments have shown that following this learning process their awareness about difference and the degree of empathy towards the Other have been hightened.