Intercultural Competence (ICC)

Intercultural competence is ranked fourth of the top ten work skills needed for the future according to Future Work Skills 2020, a study conducted by the Institute for the Future for the University of Phoenix Research Institute in 2011.

The literature to date has not settled on one particular definition of Intercultural Competence. Darla Deardorff, executive director of the Association of International Education Administrators based in Durham, North Carolina, developed a model that has persisted as a dominant model in the field. A narrative version of Deardorf’s (2006: 254) model (originally presented in the form of a more detailed pyramid) might read as:

Intercultural competence is a lifelong process that includes the development of the attitudes (respect and valuing of other cultures, openness, curiosity), knowledge (of self, culture, sociolinguistic issues) skills (listen, observe, interpret, analyze, evaluate, and relate), and qualities (adaptability, flexibility, empathy and cultural decentering) in order to behave and communicate effectively and appropriately to achieve one’s goals to some degree.

The resources provided on this page serve to assist language programs as they:

1) respond to Levine’s (2014: 72) call to “fundamentally alter how we, the professionals, think about the ontology of foreign language teaching” and how it fits in the university’s educational goals, and

2) change messaging about the value of language study by highlighting that the study of any world language, even without attaining high proficiency levels, is essential for achieving the university’s goals and obtaining transferable skills that are part of intercultural competence.

"In an increasingly multicultural business environment, the modern business professional works with individuals from a wide range of diverse backgrounds and cultures. Valuing the differences of others is what ultimately brings us all together and can be the secret to a successful, thriving workplace and a fair work culture."

"At Huntington, we embrace and value the differences in others not only because it is the right thing to do but also because it is imperative for business success. Ensuring our colleagues have high intercultural competence leads to stronger relationships, higher performance and greater employee satisfaction"

Matthew Hall, Senior Vice President, Culture Development Director at Huntington Bank (OSU Class of ’93)


Jhumpa Lahiri link


Jhumpa Lahiri Resources - A new spokesperson for ICC

New messaging in support of world language learning featured on NPR: Janice Aski talks about her interview with Jhumpa Lahiri

Global Citizenship Summer Camp- INFO