Professor: Andrew D. Wolvin, Ph.D.
o: 301-405-6521
f: 301-314-9471


Upon completion of this course, you should be able to:

  1. Understand and articulate the process of communication across cultures.
  2. Understand and articulate the impact of culture on communication.
  3. Develop strategies for effective communication across cultures.


Larry A. Samovar, Richard E. Porter, and Edwin R. McDaniel, Communication Between Cultures. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, 2007.


Attendance: Because of the seminar format and project nature of the course, attendance at all class meetings is required.

Standards: Instructional standards in this course are high, appropriate to a 400-level course. Quality class participation and individual work is expected. Your work must incorporate an understanding of the theoretical foundations covered in class and in the texts.

Classroom Procedures: You are expected to be an active participant in the class sessions, exemplifying active listening behaviors throughout each meeting.

Projects: Your work in the course will include (1) readings in the text and the reader; (2) class activities, exercises and discussions; (3) a major case study paper profiling strategies for communicating in another culture; and (4) a midterm examination and a final. Details and dates for each project will be provided.

Academic Integrity: The University of Maryland has a nationally-recognized Code of Academic Integrity, administered by the Student Honor Council. This Code sets standards for academic integrity for all students. As a student, you are responsible for upholding these standards for this course. All assignments submitted to your professor must be your own work. It is important that you be aware of the consequences of cheating, fabrication, facilitation, and plagiarism. For more information, please see:


  1. Introduction to the Course.

Unit I: Communication

  1. Principles of Communication. (Text pp. 11-16)
  2. Verbal and Nonverbal Language (Text, chs. 6,7)
  3. Cognitive Processing and Perception. (Text, ch. 3, 5)
  4. Communication Channels. (Project proposals due)

Unit II: Culture

  1. Culture and Context. (Text, chs. 4, 5, 8, 9, 10)
  2. BaFa BaFa

Unit III: Intercultural Communication Competency

  1. Intercultural Communication Competency. (Text, ch. 11)
  2. Midterm Exam.

Unit IV: Intercultural Communication Applications

  1. Research in Intercultural Communication.
  2. Project Research.
  3. Project Reports. (Prepare a research paper detailing an intercultural communication profile for communicating effectively in another culture. Focus on a specific communication variable unique to the culture rather than on a general treatment. Begin with a literature review of relevant communication theory and research that provides a foundation for your analysis. Describe characteristics of the culture, communication patterns and behaviors, and implications for communicating in the culture. In addition to print resources, utilize ethnographic research strategies to gather your data: interview representatives of the culture and, as possible, become a participant observer of the culture you are studying. Presentation of your research includes an in-class PowerPoint oral briefing which summarizes your work and a detailed, professional, double-spaced paper with complete APA documentation and citations.)
  4. Project Reports (continued).
  5. Final Exam.