The Effect of an Intercultural Communication Model on the Reading Comprehension of Refugee and Underprivileged Learners

Ghada M. Awada

Abstract

This study describes a shifting of paradigm in the literacy education of Syrian refugees and underprivileged Lebanese learners (n = 72) in three eighth-grade classes in a public school in Lebanon. The study used a pre/post experimental control-group design to address its research questions. As complement to a Human Rights Education curriculum framework suggested in 2018, an intercultural communication model named the Third Space Literature Circle (TSLC) is offered, its goal to improve the reading comprehension of underprivileged Syrian and Lebanese learners. An experimental group (n=49), received the TSLC model instruction whereas the control group (n=23), received the regular reading instruction. Results show that the experimental group outperformed the control group; in particular, some members of the experimental group became more fluent describing their experiences than their control group-counterparts.

Keywords:
    Human Rights Education, Literature Circle, literacy, reading comprehension, Third Space

Full text article

Generated from XML file

References

Aneas, M.A. & M.P. Sandín (2009). Intercultural and cross-cultural communication research: Some reflections about culture and qualitative methods. Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 10(1): 93-102. https://doi.org/10.17169/fqs-10.1.1251

Awada, G., H. Diab & K. Faour (2018). A call for curriculum reform to combat refugees’ crisis: The case of Lebanon. Curriculum Journal, 29(1): 43-59. https://doi.org/10.1080/09585176.2017.1400450

Awada,G., G. Ghaith & N. Mawlawi (2020). Using Third Space and Literature Circles (TSLC) as transformative pedagogy for marginalized EFL Learners. Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching, 15(5): 406-414. https://doi.org/10.1080/17501229.2020.1819289

Awada, G. (2019). Global Citizenship Concepts in the Curriculum of Lebanon: Analysis and Initial Recommendations. APCEIU-UNESCO.

Appiah, K. A. (2006). Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers. W.W. Norton & Co.

Amnesty International (2012). A Whole School Approach to Human Rights Education. Accessed 30 May 2022 from https://www.amnesty.ie/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Whole-School-Approach-to-HRE-Booklet.pdf

Brabham, E.G & S.K. Villaume (2000). Questions and answers: Continuing conversations about Literature Circles. The Reading Teacher, 54(3): 278 – 280.

Brown, A.L., D. Ash, M. Rutherford, K. Nakagawa, A. Gordon & J.C. Campione (1993). Distributed expertise in the classroom. In G. Salomon (ed.), Distributed Cognitions: Psychological and Educational Considerations (188-228). Cambridge University Press.

Burridge, N., A. Chodkiewicz, A.M. Payne, S. Oguro, S. Varnham & J. Buchanan (2013). Human Rights Education in the Australian School Curriculum. Sydney: UTS Publishing Service. Accessed 30 May 2022 from https://www.hurights.or.jp/archives/asia-pacific/section1/pdf_1/HREAustralia.pdf

Crosland, K., & K. Gutiérrez (2003). Standardizing teaching, standardizing teachers: Educational reform and the deprofessionalization of teachers in an English-only era. Educators for Urban Minorities, 2(2): 24-40.

Cole, M. (1985). The Zone of Proximal Development: Where culture and cognition create each other. In J.V. Wertsch (ed.), Culture, Communication, and Cognition: Vygotskian Perspectives (146-161). Cambridge University Press.

Cole, M. & Y. Engestrom (1993). A cultural-historical approach to distributed cognition. In G. Salomon (ed.), Distributed Cognitions: Psychological and Educational Considerations (1-46). Cambridge University Press.

Delante, N. (2020). Classroom teaching as an intercultural communication phenomenon: A thematic analysis of a foreign teacher’s rhetorical practices as communication dynamic. Journal of Intercultural Communication Research, 49(6): 536-568. https://doi.org/10.1080/17475759.2020.1790406

Davydov, V. (1988). Problems of developmental teaching: The experience of theoretical and experimental psychological research excerpts. Soviet Education, 30(8): 6-97.

Engestrom, Y. (1994). The working health center project: Materializing learning. In T. Kaouppinen & M. Lahtonen (eds.), Action Research in Finland. Helsinki, Ministry of Labor.

Ezzy, D. (2002). Qualitative Analysis: Practice and Innovation. Routledge.

Freire, P. (1970). Pedagogy of the Oppressed, tr. M.B. Ramos. Continuum.

Freire, P. (1998). Teachers as Cultural Workers: Letters to Those Who Dare Teach, tr. D. Macedo, D. Koike & A. Oliveira). Boulder, CO, USA: Westview.

Gee, J.P. (1996). Social Linguistics and Literacies: Ideology in Discourses (2nd Edition). LTaylor & Francis.

Goodwin, C. (2006). Human sociality as mutual orientation in a rich interactive environment: Multimodal utterances and pointing in aphasia. In N.J. Enfield & S.C. Levinson (eds.), Roots of Human Sociality: Culture, Cognition and Interaction (97-125). Berg Publishers.

Griffin, P., & M. Cole (1987). New technologies, basic skills, and the underside of education: What is to be done? In J.A. Langer (ed.), Language, Literacy, and Culture: Issues of Society and Schooling (199-231). Norwood, NJ, USA: Ablex.

Gutiérrez, K. D. (1994). Scripts, counterscripts, and the construction of context in literacy activities for elementary school-aged Latino children: Perspectives on literacy, schooling and power [oral presentation]. XIII World Congress of Sociology, Bielefeld, Germany, July 1994.

Gutiérrez, K. D. (1995). Script, counterscript, and underlife in the urban classroom: Constructing a Third Space [oral presentation]. Fourth International Literacy and Education Research Network Conference on Learning, Townsville, QLD, Australia, June 1995.

Gutiérrez, K.D. (2008). Developing a sociocritical literacy in the Third Space. Reading Research Quarterly, 43(2): 148-164. https://doi.org/10.1598/RRQ.43.2.3

Gutiérrez, K.D. & N.E. Jaramillo (2006). Looking for educational equity: The consequences of relying on Brown. Yearbook of the National Society for the Study of Education, 105(2): 173-189. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1744-7984.2006.00081

Haugbolle, S. (2005). Public and private memory of the Lebanese civil war. Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East, 25(1): 191–203.

Kawa, N., E. Hanna & A.R. Bizri (2019). Transmissible dermatological diseases affecting Syrian refugees in Lebanon. Journal of Refugee & Global Health, 2(2): 1-5. https://doi.org/10.18297/rgh/vol2/iss2/4

Lakoff, G. & M. Johnson (1980). Metaphors we Live By. University of Chicago Press.

O'Dowd, R. (2019). A transnational model of virtual exchange for global citizenship education. Language Teaching, 53(4): 477-490. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0261444819000077

Shuayb, M. (2015). Human rights and peace education in the Lebanese civics textbooks. Research in Comparative and International Education, 10(1): 1-16. https://doi.org/10.1177/1745499914567823

Scollon, R. & S.W. Scollon (2003). Discourses in Place: Language in the Material World. Routledge.

Shelton-Strong, S.J. (2012). Literature Circles in ELT. ELT Journal, 66(2): 214-223. https://doi.org/10.1093/elt/ccr049

Stoian, C. E. (2020). Indirect vs. direct communication: Steps in becoming culturally intelligent. Journal of Humanistic and Social Studies, 11(1): 93-102.

Tibbitts, F. & P.G. Kirchschlaeger (2010). Perspectives of research on human rights education. Journal of Human Rights Education, 2(1): 8–29.

Tuomi-Gröhn, T., Y. Engestrom & M. Young (2003). From transfer to boundary-crossing between school and work as a tool for developing vocational education: An introduction. In T. Tuomi-Gröhn & Y. Engström (eds.), Between School and Work: New Perspectives on Transfer and Boundary-crossing (1-15). Pergamon.

Venegas, E.M. (2018). Strengthening the reader self-efficacies of reluctant and struggling readers through Literature Circles. Reading & Writing Quarterly, 34(5): 419-435. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10573569.2018.1483788

Vygotsky, L.S. (1978). Mind in Society: The Development of Higher Psychological Processes, tr. M. Cole, V. John-Steiner, S. Scribner & E. Souberman. Harvard University Press.

Wells, G. (1999). Dialogic Inquiry: Toward a Sociocultural Practice and Theory of Education. Cambridge University Press.

Widodo, H.P. (2016). Engaging students in Literature Circles: Vocational English reading programs. The Asia-Pacific Education Researcher, 25(2): 347-359. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40299-015-0269

Authors

Ghada M. Awada
ghada.awada@lau.edu.lb (Primary Contact)
Author Biography

Ghada M. Awada, Lebanese American University, Graduate Research Studies, Chouran Street, Beirut, Lebanon

Dr. Ghada M. Awada has a PhD in education and a PhD in public international law and diplomacy. She is a founder of the Gloria Academy (http://www.gloria-academy.com). She was a Fulbright Scholar at North Carolina State University (2016). She has served as a UNESCO and World Bank consultant. She is the first female recipient of the American University of Beirut Excellence Service Award (2018) and a faculty member at the Lebanese American University. She specializes in HRE, learning difficulties, cooperative learning, intercultural education, global citizenship education, curriculum reform and teacher-training issues.

Awada, G. M. (2022). The Effect of an Intercultural Communication Model on the Reading Comprehension of Refugee and Underprivileged Learners. Journal of Intercultural Communication, 21(3), 88–99. https://doi.org/10.36923/jicc.v21i3.23

Article Details