International Education

IDS 203 (W) Intercultural Study within Cultural Immersion (1)

(Students planning their academic schedule should take into consideration that the course may not be available each semester.)

  • The course is designed to facilitate and promote the experiential learning process in an intercultural context.
  • Introduces students to the value of cultural comparison that illuminates both similarities and differences.
  • Improves the overall study abroad program by providing essential pre-departure and re-entry training designed to capitalize on the cultural immersion experience.
  • Prepares students to learn from the psychological and conceptual challenges they will face during each phase of the experience.
  • Examines the advantages and disadvantages of culture study, including the contrast of internal and external perspectives, and the concept of critical self-consciousness.
  • Encourages and challenges students to continue learning about other cultures and other perspectives.

Students can choose to take this course while abroad. The professor and students will interact via WISE (an online academic discussion area) discussing and encouraging each others thoughts and writing. The emphasis is on analyzing experiences abroad while they are happening. It involves interacting and responding to other students who are participating in the course but are studying in different locations around the world.  Willamette students studying abroad who choose to take this course will not be registered for the otherwise required IDS 102X Maximizing the Study Abroad Experience (.25) course. (International students studying at Willamette do not take the IDS 102X course.)

Testimonials and encouragement from students who have completed the course:

WU student studying in Europe - "First of all, it will be the most enjoyable writing-centered credit that you'll ever receive. I was nervous that it might be too time-consuming or burdensome, but the assignments are very flexible and allow you to explore the subject matter in a way that interests and motivates you. It has been very educationally, culturally, and personally interesting to read the entries of the other students abroad, as well as those of international student at Willamette. The course encourages you to reflect on your own experiences in a manner that may be more concrete than what you would do on your own. I have been very satisfied with the experience."

WU student studying in Africa -  "I would highly recommend to anyone studying abroad to take this course. It has been truly one of the 'highlights' of my abroad experience. This may sound strange, but in all reality, it is what made me truly maximize my experience here. It allowed to me to really process what I was experiencing and reflect upon it....Take the course!"

International student studying at WU -"It is great to have the freedom to write down thoughts about something significant that has happened during one's exchange, and I believe I would not have written them down if I hadn't taken the course. Besides, the freedom to complete assignments at any time during the week is simply fantastic and I often sit down on Sundays and collect my thoughts; look back at the events of the week and realize how many meaningful experiences one can have in as little as one week."

Please contact with any questions.