College of Arts and Sciences - Team 3

Project by:  Team 3

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 Prof. Leslie DeNardis, Associate Professor, Gov., Politics & Global Studies, 

Prof. Patricia Carl-Stannard, Assistant Clinical Professor, Social Work & 

Prof. Mary Ignagni, Instructor, Psychology

Building Intercultural Communications across Disciplines

Digital Tools: Video Creation, Movie Maker

“The Cultures of SHU: Fostering Greater Cultural Awareness and Forging a Campus Culture of Inclusion”

This project represents an interdisciplinary collaboration between the fields of Political Science (Lesley DeNardis), Psychology (Mary Ignagni) and Social Work (Pat Carl-Stannard). It is an exploration of multiculturalism at SHU which served as a connective thread between our disciplines both in terms of engaging a relevant and timely issue that is common to our disciplines and also to serve larger institutional needs. In light of institutional efforts to promote internationalization of the curriculum, the topic of multiculturalism is timely in that it speaks to larger institutional questions of campus culture as well as more scholarly/pedagogic concerns. As the university is poised to expand its internationalization efforts, the dynamics of an increasingly diverse student body will be one of the main challenges facing SHU in the near future. This module can be presented as a stand-alone piece for a colloquia and/or as an embedded module within a course.

As a vehicle to introduce the topic of multiculturalism, we designed a five minute video using the computer program “Movie Maker”. Our goal was to show the diverse cultures already present at SHU, accentuate the positive strides being made already and begin a campus wide conversation about the challenges and promise of cultural diversity. After the video introduction, the module proceeds to explore multiculturalism from the perspectives of Social Work, Psychology and Political Science. It is intended to showcase interdisciplinary and integrated approaches to learning and how each discipline contributes to a better understanding of multiculturalism. A social work perspective offers insights into individual and group behaviors that can impede or foster greater multicultural understanding between students and co-workers. A psychological perspective considers the ways in which multicultural environments contribute to positive outcomes in educational and work place settings. A political science perspective will discuss the formulation of laws, policies and regulations to deal with diversity and integration and the extent to which policies fostering cultural diversity advance social and civic cohesion.