What would you do to become culturally competent before going to study abroad?

Talk to people who have been to the country: Getting in touch with people who have been to the country is a step towards becoming familiar with people's lives and their way of life. Maintain excellent communication: Learning to maintain good communication is also a step towards cultural competence. The first thing you'll want to do is research your destination. Talk to people you know who have visited the country, read travel guides, and look for tips and advice on your university's website.

In some cultures, you are rarely alone and many translations of the word “privacy” have a negative connotation of being isolated. Not only will you get used to the culture of your study abroad destination, but you'll also be surrounded by other international students from around the world. It can also be useful to learn the cultural etiquette and values of the country in which you are going to study. Learning some basic aspects of the country's history, politics and national events and knowing the weather conditions can help you adapt culturally to your new home.

It can be helpful to talk about all aspects of studying abroad so that you can share the experience of adjusting to a new culture with people who are in similar situations. Talking about local culture and ways to overcome culture shock can help you better understand the country and its residents, which will benefit your stay abroad. Living in a new country and adapting to a new culture doesn't mean you have to change your own customs and values. To learn another culture, it's imperative that you recognize and understand your own cultural values and norms.

Once the initial honeymoon phase wears off, the dissonance between native and host cultures begins to appear more pronounced and a sense of alienation can engender. Other cultures are more concerned with “saving appearances” and may say something in an indirect way or put a more positive spin on the situation to save appearances. Feelings of culture shock are inevitable, but recognizing their existence and knowing them in advance will help you prepare to accept temporary discomfort and learn more from the experience. Being aware of the imminent change that is inevitable when entering another culture is the first step to cultural adjustment.

It is home to a wide range of racial and ethnic backgrounds, not to mention individual differences influenced by geography, socioeconomic conditions, education, vocation, religion, and cultural heritage. If you're concerned about anti-American sentiment, check out the Glimpse Foundation's following cultural adaptation guide, titled “American Identity Abroad,” which aims to help students studying abroad address the difficult issues surrounding being citizens of the world's only superpower.

Kaosi Maryjoe Onyenaucheya
Kaosi Maryjoe Onyenaucheya

A Graduate of English and Literature Education from University of Benin, Nigeria. Maryjoe has significant experience in counselling Nigerian students about study abroad opportunities in the USA, Canada, UK and elswhere. She is passionate about helping students achieve their study abroad dreams.From the Seed Educational Consulting in Abuja, Maryjoe helps families from all over Nigeria with university abroad.Seed Educational Consulting | Nigeria | Study Abroad,Ambassador Albert Osakwe House, 1473 Inner Block St, Central Business District, 900103, Abuja, Federal Capital Territory, Nigeria+234 701 339 6316I look forward to hearing from you.

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