To look at the universe through the eyes of others

Presented by: Ronan Doherty

Cultura is a language and cultural exchange project that connects language learners in different countries by means of a shared blog or website. Its objective is to allow learners to construct a deeper understanding of each other’s values, beliefs and attitudes while contributing to the language acquisition process in each class group. This presentation will briefly outline the origins of the Cultura model and its underlying principles and methodology. It will then discuss one implementation of an intercultural exchange between Irish language students at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth, Ireland, and the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, USA. The presentation will discuss how the project was aligned with the learning outcomes of both student groups, as well as examining challenges and innovations that were unique to this particular exchange. While most Cultura exchanges focus on intercultural communication between third level students, the model is adaptable to various groups of intermediate and advanced language learners.

Presenter Biography:

Ronan Doherty is currently completing an M.Litt. (Nua-Ghaeilge) at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. His research interests are mainly in the areas of applied linguistics, learning technology and the role of literature in language learning. He was previously a Fulbright FLTA at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, and has taught Irish to adults and third level students in Ireland and the United States.