Assessing intercultural awareness. Reflection vs. Interaction in Telecollaboration


This small case study investigates the usefulness of two complementary assessment models to find evidence of the cognitive thinking processes associated with behaviours of increased intercultural awareness. Two intercultural telecollaboration exchanges (Autumn 2017 and Winter 2018) involved participants from a Canadian (Québec) and an Italian university who were all studying English as foreign/second language. Participants’ written answers to questionnaires and discussion questions were quantitatively and qualitatively analysed to find evidence of increased intercultural awareness. Two models were employed: the Interacting Processes of Intercultural Learning by Liddicoat and Scarino (IPIL; Liddicoat and Scarino 2013, Scarino and Liddicoat 2009) and the model of Practical Inquiry (PI) within the Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework by Garrison et al. (2001). The IPIL model describes intercultural learning as a progression of behaviours, whereas the PI model emphasizes the cognitive phases involved in online, interactive learning. IPIL provided evidence of participants’ increased intercultural awareness in the analysis of questionnaire data; however, the higher cognitive interactive behaviours were elusive. The PI model, conceived for assessing online interactive learning, not only provided evidence of the participants’ higher cognitive processes in discussion questions, but also afforded a rich and deep description of the learners’ progress toward greater intercultural awareness.

DOI Code: 10.1285/i22390359v33p211

Keywords: Interacting Process of Intercultural Learning; Community of Inquiry (CoI); Practical Inquiry; telecollabora-tion; intercultural awareness and assessment.


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