On Intercultural Communicative Competence: Student-teachers’ Accounts of Colombian Cultural Identity

  •  Francisco Perez-Gomez    
  •  Dra. Dina Elizabeth Cortes Coss    


In student-teachers’ education, it is fundamental to foster the intercultural communicative competence for them to express their views on cultural concepts and phenomena in written and orally, with native and non-native speakers of a foreign language. In the same vein, future foreign language teachers, particularly at an early stage of their learning process, are expected to possess some basic citizen competencies which allow them, amongst other things, to show an understanding of the country they live in, the cultural diversity it has, and the current situation they and their co-nationals are facing (cognitive dimension). 
Bering in mind the importance of competences mentioned before. This short-scale quantitative study set out to classify the perceptions that a group of student-teachers had on Colombia, their cultural identity, and Colombians’ cultural identity in general. To that end, one oral and two written short narratives along with a final questionnaire were collected and analysed using Atlas TI. 8 and Excell spreadsheets. The counting and classification of prominent speech parts that conveyed perceptions (nouns, nouns plus adjectives and adjective per se) unveiled that participants held quite optimistic views on their nation, particularly in cultural, natural, geographic, and culinary aspects. It was also revealed that student-teachers had a high appreciation of themselves culturally speaking, praising their personality and mood as most important features. Furthermore, it was unveiled that participants held a positive view about their compatriots, highlighting their personality, mood, and character. It is important to remark that positive views about own identity were much higher than general views on Colombians.

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