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Intercultural Competence

The Center for Language Studies' (CLS) Certificate in Intercultural Competence acknowledges that in an ever more interconnected world and society, with more opportunities for collaboration as well as situations of conflict, students need to understand and respect other cultures.  By approaching language study, area studies courses and experiential learning through a critical lens focused on developing intercultural competence, students prepare themselves for a future after Brown working with people from all over the world, be it in industry, business, the university or in social justice work, anywhere where multicultural and multilingual groups work together.

Certificate Requirements: 

Core Courses1.5
Theory and Practice of Intercultural Competence
LANG 1800 Prerequisite
To be completed alongside the internship or study away experience. The experiential learning component must focus on the same language community as the elective coursework. All prerequisite assignments are made available for asynchronous completion in Canvas.
Capstone Seminar in Intercultural Competence
Language Study: Choose 2 courses taught in the same language and in the language needed for the experiential learning component from the list of electives. Courses listed below represent the minimum level required to fulfill the language requirement. Courses at higher levels must be taught in the target language.2
Second-Year Arabic (and above*)
Intermediate Czech (and above including independent studies*)
Intermediate German I (and above*)
Advanced Spanish II (and above*)
Intermediate Hindi-Urdu (and above*)
Swahili I (and above*)
Beginning Nahuatl (and above*)
Intermediate Polish (and above*)
POBS 0600 Topics in Portuguese-Speaking Cultures (and above*)
Intermediate Persian Language and Culture (and above*)
Intermediate Russian (and above*)
American Sign Language IV (and above*)
Intermediate Turkish (and above*)
Intermediate Vietnamese (and above*)
Introduction to Yoruba II (and above*)
Independent Studies related to language learning. These may be in various languages and students must take two semesters of the same language. Please consult with the CIC Advisor for initial approval.
Area Perspectives Course: Please choose 1 course to deepen your knowledge of one area and/or to bring together your interest in languages with other relevant academic interests. This course can be in any language.1
Sound and Symbols: Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology
Language and Migration
Indian Issues in Anthropological Perspective
Language and Power
ARAB 0700 and above
Learning Compositional Language
Language Processing in Humans and Machines
Logic in Language and Thought
Dimensions of Czech Animation: Contexts, Interpretations, and Dialogs with the East
GRMN 0500 and above
Berlin: Architecture, Politics and Memory
Modern Middle East Roots: 1492 to the Present
'Neither of the East nor West': The Ottoman Empire
America and the Middle East: Histories of Connection and Exchange
Rwanda Past and Present
Iran and the Islamic Revolution
Linguistic Variation and Universals
Information Theory in Language
Identity and Languages in Contemporary Africa
Language and Film Discourse in Africa
The Middle East in Berlin: Urban Spaces and Voices
Pathology to Power: Disability, Health and Community
Polish Cinema: Uneven Histories, Uneasy Aesthetics
Early Modern Global History at the John Carter Brown Library: A Research Workshop
Modern Iran: Literature, Media & Pop Culture
Iranian Cinema: Before and After the Islamic Revolution
Russian Culture: From Peter The Great to Putin
Central Europe: An Idea and its Literature
Sociolinguistics (with Case Studies on the Former USSR and Eastern Europe)
Understanding Modern Turkey Through Film and Literature
Istanbul, Global Metropolis
Introductory Ottoman Turkish I
Berlin: Global Metropolis (1945-2020)
Additional courses may count towards the area perspectives requirement, please see the CIC faculty advisor for approval.
Experiential Learning Component
Students are encouraged to consult with the CIC Faculty Advisor to gain approval before the start of the Experiential Learning Component. Students may however gain credit after completion with appropriate approval. Students will need to keep track of time and present documentation from a supervisor of hours completed. Students choose one of the following experiential learning opportunities:
International internships require use of the language students are studying for the language study elective and must include engagement with the community. The internship must be of at least 4 weeks and equal a total of 60 hours.
Study Abroad in a country in which a language other than English is used, must be at a university where courses are offered in the language the student has chosen for their language study elective, must include enrollment in at least one course taught in the language the student has chosen for their elective and must be for a period of one semester or at least 4 weeks in the summer.
Domestic internships require use of and significant exposure to the language the student is studying for their language study elective. Students will intern for one semester or at least 4 weeks in the summer for a minimum of 60 hours.
Total Credits4.5

For a list of languages currently participating in the certificate, please see the CLS Website. Students may not pursue this certificate in the same language as their concentration.