This paper has four parts:
• Part 1: Research a cultural group different from your own, and adapt or develop a cultural and values assessment tool.
• Part 2: Use the tool to interview an individual from the cultural group that you researched.
• Part 3: Evaluate your tool and your interview skill and write objectives for improvement.
• Part 4: Engage in a cultural encounter related to the cultural group you studied.
Start by identifying a cultural group that you want to know more about. A cultural group can be defined in many ways, i.e., by nationality, ethnicity, profession, religion, sexuality, certain conditions such as deafness (the deaf community), etc. However, it will be easiest for this assignment to choose a given nationality, ethnicity, or a group with recognized cultural aspects such as specific rules, language, beliefs, wrongs and rights, etc. about which you can research in the literature. (You should also take into consideration that you will need to find someone of this group to interview in person.)
Your next step will be to research information in the literature regarding that cultural group. You will need to explore a minimum of: one web site, one chapter on the culture in a textbook addressing diverse cultures (such as those listed as supplemental texts in your syllabus), and one article related to the culture from a reputable journal (such as Journal of Transcultural Nursing, Western Journal of Nursing Research, or Anthropology of Medicine).
Next, look at the example assessment tools in the next file. You can adapt your own tool by using one of these frameworks, or a mixture of several, plus adapt or add some questions specific to the cultural group from your reading about that group.
Use the assessment tool that you develop to interview an individual who belongs to the culture you are studying. Tape record the interviews, or take very good notes (this interferes with the interview, but the interviewee may not want to be taped), then write it up as in the examples. (Note: You should take some notes even if you tape record, just in case the recorder doesn’t work! Lessons from experience….)
A. Evaluate Your Cultural Skill
Step 1: Based on your experience doing a cultural assessment with your custom-designed tool, rate your cultural skill level as novice, advanced beginner, competent, proficient, or expert, and explain your choice. The information you will need to self-evaluate is found in this article: Campinha-Bacote, J. (1995). The quest for cultural competence. Nursing Forum, 30(4), 19-25. This is found in the file below labeled “Evaluating your Assessment Tool and Skill.”
Step 2: Assuming that you do not self-assess as expert, write 3-5 measurable objectives describing steps you can take to advance your skill level in the future.
B. Evaluate Your Assessment Tool
Based on your pilot experience with cultural assessment tool, and the information that you read in the article above, comment on what, if anything, you might want to change in the tool, i.e. to ask some questions differently, or to organize your tool in a different way.
Engage in a cultural encounter, during which you can practice some ethnographic skills (see the list of possible cultural encounter ideas below).
Examples of Possible Encounters
• Eat at an ethnic restaurant. Learn about the food, if certain dishes have an
interesting history, or are eaten at special events.
• Read publications of the culture, for example local ethnic newspapers.
• Watch Spanish TV channels and see what’s on. What is your reaction to the
programs? (It is interesting and timely to watch other country’s coverage of the war and compare it to US coverage.)
• Spend time talking with someone you know – or someone you might meet –
from a different cultural background. Get to know that person better in terms of their culture. Ask the person what they would suggest in terms of organizations, activities, and people that could help you know more of the culture.
• Visit organizations related to the culture of your choice – immigrant school for the deaf, for example.
• Volunteer in related social activities as applicable.
• Rent movies related to your topic and watch them.
• Spend time observing or interviewing a traditional healer or practitioner of
alternative therapy used by members of your chosen culture.
• Attend an English as Second Language (ESL) class.
• Attend a worship service of a different culture.
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