Cultural orientation courses for international PhD students/academics/spouses

Short course/series of courses on local cultural specifics. These include both specifics of everyday life and of organisational culture. The trainees will be able to deal better in everyday communication and to act more efficiently as a member of your ourganisation. Their spouses will find it easier to adapt to local cultural specifics..

Intercultural differences, sometime invisible, may destroy any team. The best way to:


  • Avoid miscommunication;

  • Ensure good athmosphere at work;

  • Achieve better scientific results and

  • Retain attracted foreign students and researchers,

Is to integrate them as much as possible into the local and organisational culture. 

The easiest and most effective way is to offer a series of short (preferrably 1-hour-long) courses on different themes from your local and your organisational culture. It is even more efficient if each of them is combined with a relevant informal event involving local researchers or visiting an external event, museum or exhibition. This way the international PhD students/academics and their spouses will be able to combine theory and practice, which in turn will facilitate their integration in the local/organisational culture providing them with opportunities to further socialise and with (hopefully) nice memories.

Goals

Improved skills and knowledge Support mental health and wellbeing Better communication and cooperation Social integration

Basic information

Categories Social Integration & Daily Life Family Matters
Mobility stages During mobility phase
Delivery schedule Once an academic year
Importance Important to have
Scale of organizational change
Target groups PhD student/Early career researcher R2 - R4 researchers Lecturers (incl. Language Teachers)
Types of contracts of researchers Full degree student Permanent employee Visiting scholar Employee in training (interns, research fellows, postdocs) Fixed term employee Exchange student
Career stages of researchers Less than 6 months 6-12-months of experience 1-3-years of experience 3-10 years of experience 10-15 years of experience More than 15 years of experience
Lengths of stays of researchers 3-6 months 6-12 months More than 12 months

Practice setup

Setting up of this practice is quite simple. It includes:


  • Appointing a person responsible for organising the trainings and events,

  • Identifying at least two trainers and their availability,

  • Preparing a training plan (in consultation with the identifed trainers),

  • Envisaging possible supporting events close to the training in terms of time and relevant to each topic.

By having all these you may consider that you are prepared.

Cost of practice setup
Time required for practice setup
Personnel effort required for practice setup
Actors involved in practice setup
  • HR Department
  • Study department
  • Doctoral school
  • Career development centre
  • Language department
Partners involved in practice setup
  • Tourist information centre/board
  • Museum
  • EURAXESS centre
Indicators for evaluating progress/quality of practice setup
  • Training plan and programme designed
  • Average satisfaction rate
  • Number of events organized annually
Description of collaboration

@EURAXESS Centre -  The best partner to involve is the nearest EURAXESS center (if it is not part of your organisation). EURAXESS members could share experience, good/bad practice and provide advice and support in delivery.

For this reason it is important to involve the network representatives as early as possible.

@ Tourist information centre and Museum -   optional partners that might be useful for social events attached to the cultural orientation course.

Practice delivery

There are several steps to ensure smoth delivery:


  • Book a room/rooms.

  • Get in touch with the identified trainers.

  • Assist the trainers in developing the training programme.

  • Prepare training and information materials.

  • Prepare a supporting event/events or a visit /visits to external ones according to the envisaged topics.

  • Announce the training event/events.

  • Create and implement a registration procedure.

  • Support the trainer/trainers in delivery with facilities, stationery and ideas for interactive games.

  • Collect feedback and analyse it.

  • Discuss the feedback results with the trainer/trainers. Together, plan any necessary changes to the training programme accordingly.

At this stage it is important to involve the family members and other local researchers with their families too. Such joint events are really beneficial and of a strong impact. The main principle to use is learning by doing!

Cost of practice delivery
Time required for practice delivery
Personnel effort required for practice delivery
Actors involved in practice delivery
  • IRO/welcome centre
  • Study department
  • Language department
Partners involved in practice delivery
  • EURAXESS centre
  • Tourist information centre/board
  • Museum
Indicators for evaluating progress/quality of practice delivery
  • Number of trainings implemented annually
  • Number of researchers trained annually
Description of collaboration

@EURAXESS Centre -  The best partner to involve is the nearest EURAXESS center (if it is not part of your organisation). EURAXESS members could share experience, good/bad practice and provide advice and support in delivery.

For this reason it is important to involve the network representatives as early as possible.

@ Tourist information centre and Museum -   optional partners that might be useful for social events attached to the cultural orientation course.

Examples of practice

Intercultural Competence in Business

An example with focus on Diversity are the courses on different subtopics offered by university of Vienna. For instance one of them "Intercultural Competence in Business" could be reached here:

https://ufind.univie.ac.at/en/course.html?lv=040108&semester=2022S

For more please, use the search option through all courses in the main link:

https://ufind.univie.ac.at/en/course.html?lv=980040&semester=2022S

Find out more

Intercultural Competence

The EURAXESS Intercultural Assistant is used as a supporting tool for training students and researchers. Within the tool you may find short and long online self paced courses, self assessment instrument and useful information and references. 

Find out more