Sep 26, 2020  
2019-2020 Course Catalog 
    
2019-2020 Course Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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COMM 2051 - Minnesota’s New Immigrants: Communication, Culture and Conflict

Credits: 3
Hours/Week: Lecture 3 Lab None
Course Description: Minnesota’s recent immigrant/refugee population is markedly different from that of the rest of the U.S., with proportionately significant numbers of Hmong, Somalis, Liberians, and Tibetans among others. In this course we study some of the more visible groups and the regions they come from: Southeast Asia, Horn of Africa, West Africa, Latin America, former Soviet Union/Eastern Europe. Why did they leave their homeland? What culture and communication did they bring with them? What communication adjustment and cultural conflicts do they experience? What are some important issues for their lives in Minnesota as they communicate with the larger society? Materials/activities include readings, films, discussions, interviews, and guest speakers/on-site visits when possible.
MnTC Goals
5 History/Social/Behavioral Science, 7 Human Diversity

Prerequisite(s): Course placement into college-level English and Reading OR completion of ENGL 0950  with a grade of C or higher OR completion of RDNG 0940  with a grade of C or higher and qualifying English Placement Exam OR completion of RDNG 0950  with a grade of C or higher and ENGL 0090  with a grade of C or higher OR completion of ESOL 0051  with a grade of C or higher and ESOL 0052  with a grade of C or higher.
Corequisite(s): None
Recommendation: ENGL 1020  with a grade of C or higher OR ENGL 1021  with a grade of C or higher  or concurrently enrolled.

Major Content
  1. Introduction to course Trends in international migration Immigrant vs. refugee/asylee status. Crisis and response: The U.S. reaction to current conditions.
  2. Patterns of Minnesota immigration. Changing populations since 1990. Important demographic characteristics. Issue facing Twin Cities and outstate immigration/refugee groups. Implications for public policy.
  3. Southeast Asia/Hmong. Introduction to topic: Historical background. Class discussion: Communication, culture clash, and adaptation.
  4. Horn or Africa/Somali. Introduction to topic: Historical background. Class discussion: Communication, culture clash, and adaptation.
  5. West Africa/Liberian. Introduction to topic: Historical background. Class discussion: Communication, culture clash, and adaptation.
  6. Latin America/Mexican Introduction to topic: Historical background. Class discussion: Communication, culture clash, and adaptation.
  7. Former Soviet Union, Eastern Europe/Russian, Bosnian. Introduction to topic: Historical background. Class discussion: Communication, culture clash, and adaptation.

Learning Outcomes
At the end of this course students will be able to:

  1. Describe basic cultural and communication features of the target groups and geographic areas.
  2. Recount conditions in these areas which forced or motivated people to come to the U.S. and Minnesota.
  3. Analyze major issues of the immigrant/refugee experience with reference to communication and culture.
  4. Describe key communication dynamics within a given immigrant/refugee community (intra-), and between that community and the larger host culture (inter-).
  5. Analyze how intercultural communication concepts (e.g. U-curve hypothesis) can contribute to immigrant/refugee adaptation and adjustment.
  6. Explain how the immigrant experience is communicated and interpreted in contemporary films.
  7. Display some measure of change in intercultural attitude and/or behavior through either self-report or pretest/posttest instrument.

Competency 1 (1-6)
05. 01. Employ the methods and data that historians and social and behavioral scientists use to investigate the human condition.
05. 02. Examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods and cultures.
05. 04. Develop and communicate alternative explanations or solutions for contemporary social issues.
Competency 2 (7-10)
07. 01. Understand the development of and the changing meanings of group identities in the United States’ history and culture.
07. 03. Analyze their own attitudes, behaviors, concepts and beliefs regarding diversity, racism, and bigotry.
07. 04. Describe and discuss the experience and contributions (political, social, economic, etc.) of the many groups that shape American society and culture, in particular those groups that have suffered discrimination and exclusion.
07. 05. Demonstrate communication skills necessary for living and working effectively in a society with great population diversity.


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