By Anne Hodgson
Rudi Camerer and Judith Mader of elc (European Language Competence) Training and Consulting came to Berlin and gave us a 4-day train the trainer course to help us prepare learners for effective intercultural communication. A group of 12 participants, 7 from Berlin and 5 from elsewhere, one from as far away as Norway, met at GLS on 8/9 and 15/16 June 2013 to acquire the knowledge needed to become a licensed ICE-tester.
I found Rudi and Judith’s focus on teaching and testing effective intercultural communication rather than (just) intercultural sensitivity extremely useful. We had some great discussions, and it was great talking to the other participants about their own intercultural experiences and their successful and less successful attempts to teach the subject. The materials and exercises we were given were especially interesting as Judith and Rudi have been dealing with testing for quite some time, and it was very enlightening to think through the process of test design. I really look forward to receiving the files they are supplying as part of the package.
If I were to criticize anything it would be that I was hoping to have (even) more time to reflect actual lessons and procedures, so how to analyze a text with a large class of students, or how to run an intercultural negotiation simulation etc. The two of them told us what they don’t think works all that well – psychological tests, NLP, using Marshall Rosenberg’s Non-violent Communication model – and were highly reflected and cautious about applying simplistic models and jumping to conclusions. They have plenty of activities in the huge materials file they’ll be leaving us, so I’ll be exploring those in the coming weeks.
After these weekends together, it will now be up to us to provide the training needed to pass the written exam. Rudi and Judith suggest working with the local IHK or universities. We are now also empowered to conduct the oral exam in cooperation with an experienced and certified examiner. The certificate is validated by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IHK) Saarland.
Judith and Rudi will continue to offer this course around Germany. For more detailed information please go to: www.elc-consult.com