In this assignment, you will explore your own cultural and ethnic background and analyze how this background may affect your communication. A great deal of a message is communicated not through spoken words but through the nonverbal channels. Culture and personal experience can play a large role in the transmission and interpretation of nonverbal messages. You will reflect upon your personal experience from the viewpoint of your cultural and ethnic affiliation(s) and compare it with the scholarly literature relevant to your cultural and ethnic background.
Watch the video, Empathy Training for Ethnic and Cultural Awareness. Afterwards, identify your cultural and ethnic background. In your response, answer the following questions:
- In what ways do you feel your culture affects the way you communicate? (For example, eye contact or the lack of eye contact has a cultural component and can be interpreted as defiance or something similar by those unaware of the cultural context.)
- Provide an example of how your culture has influenced nonverbal communication.
- Discuss how nonverbal communication could influence whether or not a message is perceived accurately.
- How is someone from a different cultural background likely to perceive your message?