The Effects of a Water-Focused Study Abroad Program on Engineering Students’ Intercultural Communication Competence

Intercultural communication competence indicates the extent to which individuals understand other cultures and are able to interact effectively and appropriately with people from other backgrounds. With many international engineering initiatives happening, it is essential that students develop such skills. How are engineering students’ intercultural communication skills affected by their participation in engineering courses that feature study abroad components? This paper addresses this question as it relates to a specific course sequence, Introduction to International Engineering and Design, which focuses on water usage, water culture, and water disinfection, and, more specifically, on the use of ceramic pot filters in rural Guatemalan communities. The discussion focuses on comparing pre- and post-trip quantitative and qualitative data collected from students, including 1) student participants’ responses to questionnaires, 2) their responses to oral interviews regarding beliefs and attitudes, and 3) author Merfeld-Langston’s personal observations during a 2016 trip to Guatemala.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Features: References;
  • Monograph Title: World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2017: International Perspectives, History and Heritage, Emerging Technologies, and Student Papers

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01683731
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 9780784480595
  • Files: TRIS, ASCE
  • Created Date: Oct 4 2018 4:07PM