Reading across cultures: ‘Self localization’ in the higher education curriculum

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Higher Education institutions worldwide are aware of the fact that intercultural and interdisciplinary collaborations will be an essential part of their students’ professional lives. To that effect, it is crucial to develop pedagogical strategies to provide students with the skills that will give them the mobility and flexibility to operate efficiently in different cultural contexts. ‘Reading Across Cultures’ is a module taught at Monash University that was specifically designed to enhance students’ levels of Cultural Literacy. The module is particularly innovative in that its structure follows that of a literary studies course, but it focuses on teaching students how to transfer the analytical and interpretative skills learnt in the classroom to real life scenarios. This article presents a detailed description of how ‘Reading Across Cultures’ does this. In the context of Localization and Internationalization Studies, the article discusses the need to teach our students how to ‘localize themselves’, and how this can be achieved by means of Cultural Literacy. It also provides an explanation of the overall structure of ‘Reading Across Cultures’, including a description of assignments that will be particularly useful for educators at a tertiary level who seek to plan similar courses aimed at enhancing students’ levels of Cultural Literacy or Intercultural Competence. The article focuses on two specific techniques that were used throughout the module to enhance students’ levels of Cultural Literacy: ‘destabilization’ and ‘reflection’.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165–181
Number of pages17
JournalThe Journal of Internationalization and Localization
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Cultural literacy
  • localization
  • destabilization
  • reflection

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