Intercultural learning Course 2017-2018

Enrolment is not (yet) possible. More information will be published here in due time. 

During this course you will acquire theory on intercultural communication, receive awareness training, learn to reflect on your experiences through various assignments and learn to identify and formulate (intercultural) competences in career training. At the end of the course you will receive a certificate.

Course details

There are two meetings before departure and two meetings upon return, each lasting three to four hours. You will read several articles on intercultural communication, adaptation and skills and hand in several assignments during the three phases of the course.

Course duration

Spring semester

Course load

84 hours over a period of 7 months


Two meetings before departure in (6-8 hours total)

Two meetings upon return between June - October (6-8 hours total)

Assignments & literature

You hand in several assignments during the course. These are mostly focused on gathering information on your destination as well as reflecting on your own background, experiences abroad,  and competences gained. In addition you will read several articles related to said assignments and the themes of the modules. 


Students of Utrecht University that will study abroad.

Number of groups

Two groups of 20-25 students

Research on the outcomes of studying abroad

This pilot will be evaluated in a research project, aimed at analysing the outcomes of a study abroad period. This means that you will also be asked to fill out a pre- and post-questionnaire and some of you may be approached for reflection interviews while abroad (via Skype) and upon your return. These methodologies will also help you to better identity and formulate what you have learned while abroad and how this can increase your career opportunities.

Course modules

The course consists of the following three modules:

Before departure

Module 1: Intercultural learning

What will I learn?

This module introduces you to basic concepts in intercultural communication and competence. Through use of theory and training exercises we focus on increasing self-awareness and understanding perceptions of others. We also focus on preparation and expectations of your time abroad.

While abroad

Module 2: Intercultural reflection 

What am I learning?

During this module you revisit pre-departure expectations and become more acquainted with the host environment. You are invited to describe and reflect on your personal experiences abroad in terms of knowledge, attitudes and skills.

Upon return

Module 3: Reflection on intercultural learning

What have I learned and how do I make the most of it?

The aim of the third module is twofold. First, it offers you the opportunity to reflect once again on your experiences abroad – and to share this with others who have recently returned. On the other hand, this module helps you to identify competences that you gained abroad. We focus on verbalising the skills you have gained, and assessing how these can benefit you in your future career.