Cultural competency "refers to an ability to interact effectively with people of different cultures. Cultural competence comprises four components: (a) Awareness of one's own cultural worldview, (b) Attitude towards cultural differences, (c) Knowledge of different cultural practices and worldviews, and (d) Cross-cultural skills. Developing cultural competence results in an ability to understand, communicate with, and effectively interact with people across cultures.” (UH Student Life Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Terms)
To help students develop cultural competency, a CITE co-curricular learning activity can include reflection on the students’ cultural worldview and their understanding of other worldviews and may encourage students to examine how different cultural perspectives are valuable to the development of community. It may teach and require students to demonstrate specific skills necessary to successfully navigate cultural contexts that are unfamiliar to them. Here are some practical ways to incorporate this student learning outcome:
- Before planning a health fair for a local community, students are required to talk to community members about their attitudes and awareness of specific health issues and about health challenges that are unique to their community.
- While on a learning abroad trip, students are given opportunities to proactively engage with natives of the community and are required to incorporate these interactions in a final paper that discusses art and culture in the region.