From early September 2021, the School of Humanities of Shanghai Jiao Tong University held an online intercultural exchange program with the University of Warwick, one of the leading universities in the UK. The program has lasted for three months. Some SJTU master students majoring in International Chinese Language Education and Chinese language learners from the University of Warwick have participated in this program.
The program was coordinated by Associate Professor Guo Zhiyan from the School of Modern Languages and Cultures, the University of Warwick and Associate Professor Tan Xuhu from the Center for International Chinese Education in the School of Humanities, SJTU.
The main goal of this program is to help students from both universities develop their cross-cultural understanding and empathy. Other transferable skills such as language ability, digital literacy, problem solving, communication, teamwork are also expected to be cultivated.
In early December, program participants presented their bilingual final projects on a variety of themes, including cities, campus life, festivals, food, music, and the culture of Chinese characters. The final project presentations have shown program participants’ detailed exploration of cultural differences and their passion and understanding for different languages and cultures.
In a final questionnaire, students from both universities indicated that they had benefited greatly from this online exchange program, both in terms of language and intercultural awareness, and also expressed their wish to participate in more similar activities in the future.