The decision to produce an online option for learning to work cross-culturally resulted from limitations of a classroom-based course. The course was a 3-hour introduction to the topic held for staff in a tertiary institution and the facilitator was dissatisfied with the course for several reasons, mainly because the participants had different needs and because the content most frequently requested (i.e. information about a range of specific cultures) was not available.
Resource constraints made it impossible to offer all the different courses people asked for, though the commitment to supporting staff remained. This online learning option is the first version of the concept. It is widely applicable and we have plans for at least two more stages, depending on feedback and availability of development resources.
Some ideas that informed the design:
- The focus should be on both 'dominant' and ‘other’ groups
- The site should be accessible to all
- The site should involve multimedia elements
- There should be activities as well as information
- The site should move beyond simple transfer of classroom-based content onto the internet
- The site should experiment with the educational potential of interactive and internet technologies
The development of the Cultural Journey Website arose as a result of facilitating workshops for staff at The University of Auckland which were organised by the Centre for Professional Development. A number of university staff contributed to the original technical development of the project which has been adapted in this version for the general public.
We would also like to acknowledge the significant contribution of Brooke Fitness of Computing Fitness Limited whose 'can do' attitude translated ideas into an interactive website, Denis Ma (Graphic Designer) and all other supporters.
"This website includes images from Corel Gallery (TM) Magic 65,000 which are protected by the copyright laws of the U.S., Canada and elsewhere. Used under license. The images are incorporated for viewing purposes only. They may not be saved or downloaded."