Cross-Cultural Psychology

MIN-FSWP06Behaviour and society

About this minor

Navigating Cultural Dynamics: Fundamentals of Behavior in a Cosmopolitan Context

As globalization continues to expand, our interactions with diverse cultures are on the rise. In a cosmopolitan city like Rotterdam, home to residents and professionals from over 100 countries, proficiency in cross-cultural skills and communication has become indispensable. This minor explores critical themes within various psychological subdisciplines, encompassing emotions, identity, and psychopathology across different cultures. It delves into topics such as cultural disparities in education, navigating work within intercultural teams, the well-being of expatriates and immigrants, as well as challenges encountered in conducting cross-cultural research and assessments.

This minor is designed for students with an interest in both intercultural issues and psychology. It seeks to enhance students' awareness of cultural differences and foster the development of a more expansive academic perspective. Engaging with peers from diverse cultural backgrounds throughout the course will enrich students' understanding by allowing them to firsthand experience varied cultural perspectives.

Module 1: Fundamentals in Cross-Cultural Psychology
In Module 1 (Part 1), we will study the main themes within cross-cultural psychology. Classic concepts in this domain will be discussed, as well as the factors that need to be considered when performing and interpreting cross- cultural research. Themes that are subsequently treated are: cultural differences and similarities in cognitions, emotions and autobiographical memory, how normal and abnormal behavior is perceived in different cultures, and cross-cultural issues related to society and work. Examples belonging to this last theme are experiences of expatriates, and preferred leadership styles across cultures.

Module 2: Ethnic Differences
In Module 2 (Part 2), students learn about psychological aspects related to living in a multicultural society. This module deals with more fundamental issues, such as stereotyping and prejudice, acculturation strategies and multicultural identity development. In addition, this module addresses issues that professionals may encounter when dealing with people from different cultural backgrounds in practice. Here one can think of topics such as: the role of ethnicity in diagnostics and treatment of psychopathology, immigrants’ study success, the influence of migration on mental health, discrimination at work and team performance.

Learning outcomes

Concrete learning objectives:

  • Students gain insight into the following overarching themes: cross-cultural differences in child development, cognitions, emotions, personality, intelligence, psychopathology and the meaning of working.
  • Students gain insight into methodological issues that play a role when conducting cross-cultural research.
  • Students gain insight into ethnic differences and similarities in the domains of (mental) health care, education and the labour market.
  • Students gain insight into the processes playing a role in stereotyping and discrimination.
  • Students gain insight into multicultural identity development and acculturation strategies.
  • Students gain insight into effective behaviour in intercultural situations.

Good to know

The minor will be open for international students. For this reason, all the material and activities will be in English. The language used in all tutorial groups will therefore be English. It will be possible to answer open ended questions on the exam in Dutch.

Students from all educational backgrounds are admissible for this minor. Students who do not have a background in psychology need to be aware they may need to put in extra effort in order to master the material and understand the underlying psychological principles.

Teaching method and examination

Overview minor modules

  1. Fundamentals in Cross-Cultural Psychology
  2. Ethnic Differences

Teaching method(s)
Lectures, tutorial groups, project based working, self-study

Teaching Materials
Recent journal articles and book chapters, provided on the internet.

Method of examination
Modules 1 and 2 will be closed with a separate exam each. The exam consists of true/false statements and (short-answer) open-end questions. In addition, during Module 2 you will work in couples to prepare a presentation. During the last tutorial meeting of Module 2, you will give this presentation to the students in your tutorial group.

Composition final grade
The final grade will be a weighted average of both Exam Part 1 and Exam Part 2, plus the grade for the presentation (weights 2 + 2 + 1).
In order to pass the course, the minimum weighted average of both Exam Part 1 and Exam Part 2 must be a 5.5. Each exam separately (Part 1 and Part 2) needs to be graded with a 5.0 at minimum.
That means students can to some extent compensate an insufficient grade for one part of the minor. In addition, the assessment of the final presentation needs to be a grade of 5.5 or higher.

Link to more information

  • Credits
    ECTS 15
  • Level
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  • Start date

    2 september 2024

    • Ends
      10 november 2024
    • Term *
      Block BLOK M 1
    • Location
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