Exploring the influence of technological support, cultural constructs, and social networks on online cross-cultural learning

Rustam Shadiev, Yueh Min Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

In this study, we carried out an online cross-cultural learning activity supported by speech-enabled language translation technology on a social network service with representatives from 13 nationalities. The participants were assigned into two groups: Group I discussed the traditions and related culture of interest whereas Group II discussed traditions, culture, and any other topics of interest. We tested the effectiveness of the learning activity supported by speech-enabled language translation technology on cross-cultural learning; analysed the social network; measured the cultural constructs, and investigated the relationship between the cultural constructs and cross-cultural learning. The results revealed that Group I outperformed Group II in terms of both procedural and declarative knowledge. The results showed that Group II had better social network characteristics; for example, Group I had fewer edges and a lower average network degree than Group II. In terms of cultural constructs, the results related to power distance, individualism, and uncertainty avoidance were contradictory to those of earlier research. Finally, we found no relationship between the cultural constructs and cross-cultural learning. In this paper, we discuss implications for and suggestions to the field of technology-supported cross-cultural learning based on the results. Implications for practice or policy: • Educators need to know that content-focused communication among participants in a social network enhances cross-cultural learning, whereas social communication facilitates a strong social network. • Educators need to maintain a balance between communication styles during learning activities in order to establish a strong social network and facilitate cross-cultural understanding. • Educators need to consider in their cross-cultural learning design a contradiction between our results related to cultural constructs and those obtained in previous studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)104-118
Number of pages15
JournalAustralasian Journal of Educational Technology
Volume36
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education

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