The importance of interacting and communicating effectively with people from other cultures in workplace and educational settings is being increasingly recognised. This is the first international studies major to include these aspects.
You will be introduced to the discipline through a number of compulsory papers in international studies, while language and intercultural competence papers provide you with the intercultural and transnational knowledge and competence to interact in an international context.
In addition, you will be able to develop your particular interests further through a choice of relevant papers in social sciences, business, culture, applied linguistics or languages.
Your learning at AUT takes you out of the traditional lecture room environment. In the second year, you can experience overseas study with the possibility of exchanges in Japan, China and Hong Kong, or a country in the Pacific or South America.
For example, the two Intercultural Competence papers have a very strong experiential learning approach to gain and apply intercultural knowledge and skills. This includes critical incidents, field trips, a lot of discussion and collaborative work.
Learning continues out of the classroom with the help of technology, including blogs and wikis, and the virtual learning environment Second Life in which students have the chance to explore virtual representations of other cultures and meet people from those cultures.
In your final year you will be able to apply your knowledge and skills in a work place setting when you take the core paper, a cooperative education practicum. In some cases this paper could be completed overseas.
What is intercultural competence?Intercultural competence is the ability to establish and maintain relationships with people from other cultures — including different ethnicities, race, religions, physical or mental disabilities, or even a different discipline of study.
Even if you don't know the language or much about a culture, you have the knowledge, skills and attitude to be effectively deal with difference and the unfamiliar. You can then interact with others using the appropriate behaviour thereby avoiding miscommunication and misunderstandings.
Intercultural competence also means being more aware of your own culture, and your own values and beliefs that form your individual identity.
Upon successful completion of this programme, graduates will have the knowledge to:
The International Studies major can be taken as a single major, double major or minor in the BA, or as an additional major in other degrees. Possible double or additional majors are the Bachelor of Hospitality Management, Social Sciences, Criminology, Japanese Studies or Chinese Studies.
Plus a range of papers to develop a students' particular interests in business, international relations, social sciences, applied linguistics or languages. These papers include:
International Studies is an ideal major if you are interested in a career that involves interaction with people from other cultures either in New Zealand or overseas. This covers a wide range of occupations and includes:
The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.