Sign Systems Studies 39 (1):180-181 (2011)

This exploratory enquiry seeks to examine the largely unexplored potential of semiotics for intercultural training and education. The proposed three-partdiscussion describes the process by which semiotic theoretical principles were selected and progressively refined into an applied model which was then pilotedthrough a 2007 research initiative entitled Tools for Cultural Development. The case study involved six groups of French and Australian trainees from both theacademic and professional sectors, in collaboration with university, government and community partners. The first part of the article summarizes a review of theliterature on approaches to cultural competence training. The study then outlines the transcoding process by which the stated objectives of intercultural educationwere reformulated in semiotic terms, particularly in reference to cultural semiotics on which the theoretical core of the applied model was subsequently based.Relevant principles from other semiotic schools as well as similar theoretical and methodological stances in the social sciences reinforced the established body of theory for the training design. The third part of the study discusses the process by which semiotic principles were further defined as skill-based outcomes and goals for workshop implementation. This pragmatic defining process facilitated development of questionnaires and surveys, thereby allowing participants to evaluate the training experience by examining their perceptions about the workshop outcomes at the beginning and end of the sessions. This article presents the quantitative results of the evaluation and, in discussing the gains and limits of data obtained, provides the context for a follow-up article on the qualitative findingsof the study.
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  Language and Literature  Semiotics
Categories No categories specified
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ISBN(s) 1406-4243
DOI 10.5840/signsystems201139113
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