TEACHERS' INTERCULTURAL LEARNING AND COMPETENCE, ACTA UNIVERSITATIS OULUENSIS E Scientiae Rerum Socialium 114
|Kustantaja:||Oulun yliopisto|| |
|Oppiaine:||Kasvatus, opetus|| |
|Sijainti:||Print Tietotalo|| |
|Tekijät:||JOKIKOKKO KATRI|| |
The aim of this research is to provide more theoretical and practical knowledge and understandingon the process of teachers’ intercultural learning and the nature of intercultural competence inteachers’ work. It is a qualitative study based on questionnaires and interviews collected fromformer ITE (Intercultural Teacher Education) students in the Department of Educational Sciencesin the University of Oulu. The research consists of five articles and a summary part.
The research falls within the area of intercultural education. The theoretical framework of theresearch is based on critical pedagogy, various models of intercultural competence as well asvarious learning theories (transformative, experiential, sociocultural) which are seen asapproaches that provide analytical and theoretical tools for understanding intercultural learning.Phenomenographical and narrative research approaches construct the methodological frameworkfor the research. The data have been collected twice. The first data consist of open-endedquestionnaires (15) and half-structured interviews (10). This set of data was analysedphenomenographically. The second data consist of 10 biographical interviews which are analysednarratively
The main results of the study suggest that, according to the conceptions of the researchsubjects, teachers’ intercultural competence is less related to specific skills and knowledge than itis comprised of a holistic approach to issues. It is perceived more as an ethical orientation topeople, life and diversity, which guides a person’s thinking and behavior rather than an ability toperform something well in an intercultural environment. On the basis of the research, teachers’intercultural learning processes differ, depending on the person’s background, living environmentand other experiences. There does not seem to be only one theory that would comprehensivelydescribe this varied process. Teachers’ intercultural learning is a process involving thecombination of formal and informal learning. While it can be a gradual process affected by variouslife experiences, it sometimes occurs rather suddenly through crises and turning points as assumedin transformative theory. The significant roles of environment and other people for interculturallearning are obvious although individual self-reflection is needed as well. The research alsohighlights the importance of emotionally strong experiences for intercultural learning.