A Simple Everyday Gesture Gave Rise to an Enlightening Discovery: International House Reflections from Former International House Residents


Despite the vast research done in the fields of Intercultural Communication, Intercultural Education, Multiculturalism, and Learning Culture, little has been done to study the institute, International House. We are living in a global society where it is important to become aware of the cultural diversity that surrounds us and International Houses plays a key role in preparing graduate and undergraduate students to function in this multicultural environment by providing a setting that facilitates residents’ acquisition of intercultural competencies. An interpretive approach was used to identify behavior and to explore the development of community in two International Houses. This approach emphasizes that intercultural communication; culture and cultural differences should be brought into context. In this study, twenty-five former International House residents from San Diego State University and the University of California Berkeley were surveyed to assess the importance of their “lived experiences” while living at International House. The results indicated that International House had a positive impact by increasing cultural awareness, tolerance and the self-esteem of its residents.


International and Comparative Education | International and Intercultural Communication

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