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I am grateful to have had the opportunity to take the Intercultural Development Inventory because it definitely told me a lot about myself! Before taking the IDI, I thought that I would probably be solidly in the ‘Acceptance’ range, as the characteristics of this stage seemed to describe me very welli After taking the IDI, I was surprised to learn that my perceived orientation was slightly in ‘Adaptation’ (by ‘32 points), but my developmental orientation was in the ‘Cusp of Acceptance’, which I think places me in a transitional period between minimization and acceptance, I think this is a fitting place for me because through my intercultural teaching experiences and my personal intercultural experiences, I have learned and am continuing to learn the importance of valuing and understanding multiple cultural perspectives, I also like to learn about the cultures of others, and am supportive of inclusive classroom environments where every member is valued.
After reviewing the stages, I definitely do not think that I am yet in the ‘Adaptation’ range (as my perceived orientation suggested), but I think that I am making a conscious effort to move into that stage — or at least to move up in the continuum to a solid ‘Acceptance’! My orientation gap is 20.
44, which means that I definitely overestimated where my score would landi Again, after reviewing each stage, I can see how this discrepancy exists. This information is also making me look critically at beliefs that I might hold that would prevent me from moving forward along the continuum; information that is even more clearly explained in my trailing orientations I have two trailing orientations within minimization that are unresolved , similarity and universalismr My overall minimization trailing orientation is 2.
78, while similarity is 320 and universalism is 2.25.
This information tells me that when thinking about interacting with people from other cultures, I might automatically try to find similarities instead of honoring differences and thinking about how this might impact our interaction. I do find myself sometimes defaulting to minimization in certain situations, such as if I don‘t know much about a certain person‘s culture. However, I do think that in my interpersonal interactions, I am actively moving towards a fuller understanding that understands commonalities, but also equally honors differences in culture and perspective. By doing this, I will be more holistically accepting of a person’s worldview and experiences. My leading orientation is ‘Adaptation’, which “focuses on both increasing capability to shift deeply into one or more cultural perspectives and appropriately adapt behavior.” I think that I demonstrate some of these behaviors in some situations For example, at my previous placement in Bedford, most of my students were African American.
Only after I got to know the children, the classroom, and the school did I find myself able to shift into their culture and to adapt my behavior (most noticeably my language) to really connect with my students, 1 think that once I was comfortable and knew that I would be accepted into their community and culture, I was able to move into ‘Adaptation’ at times. I honestly hope that I can work towards being fully in this stage, and will definitely use the suggestions in the Intercultural Development Plan to get there. My cultural disengagement score is 4.40, which means that I am resolved as a member of a cultural community, This makes sense to me because I do see myself as a cultural being and connected to cultural groups 7 even if I’m not actively thinking about my culture.
Overall, through completing this inventory, I have learned a lot about myself and have been able to reflect on my intercultural actions, beliefs, and behaviors. I need to be aware of the ways in which my trailing orientations are impacting my beliefs and behaviors; this is important information that I would not have known without completing this inventory. This is definitely something that I will focus on in my interactions with others, as well as when thinking about my overall worldview. I would be interested to take this inventory again in the future 7 maybe after teaching in a country other than the United States or teaching in an IB school — to see if these experiences would help me to further develop my intercultural communication skills and attitudes and move further along the intercultural development continuum.
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