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Sustainability ; 15(11):8641, 2023.
Article in English | ProQuest Central | ID: covidwho-20243143


The COVID-19 pandemic has struck educational experience systems around the globe. This paper investigates and evaluates the student participants' perceptions who joined the international exchange seminar on global citizenship and peace held at a University in Hiroshima, Japan. Approximately seventy students and faculty members from nine to ten different universities from around the globe joined this summer program in August 2021 (online) and 2022 (face-to-face). This study is a mixed-method study. The first part consists of a quantitative analysis of BEVI data obtained from the students in the seminar before COVID-19 and after. The research concludes that there are no changes in the effects of what students learn. The second part consists of qualitative data. The data shows the perceptions of students of online teaching versus hybrid teaching. It compares the differences in participants' perceptions reported in students' feedback on the programs during and post-COVID-19. Our results confirm prominent differences exist in the students' perceptions of their learning experience during the pre-pandemic and post-pandemic periods. The findings indicate based on lessons learned post-pandemic, universities need to strive and define the meaning and purpose of international seminars, which enable students to experience a high level of intercultural social interaction online and face-to-face. As the world becomes more interconnected, virtual environments, such as the ones presented within the International Seminar in Hiroshima, Japan, are vital to facilitating intercultural teaching environments and the implications within this paper indicate that these virtual mediums can promote inclusion, leading to a more sustainable world.

Sustainability ; 14(15):9024, 2022.
Article in English | ProQuest Central | ID: covidwho-1994150


Intercultural Virtual Collaboration (IVC) has been a growing field in recent decades as it allows students from different cultures to work together without having to move physically. Besides providing students with an authentic experience that they are going to encounter in their future professional careers in increasingly globalised and digitised workplaces, more recently, IVC has also been used as a means to engage university students from different cultures in social and political issues that are common across societies. In this paper, we present an analysis of an IVC project that involved undergraduate Business students from a university in Spain and a university in the Netherlands where students from both universities were asked to collaborate online to develop a business case to analyse how companies communicate about the way they integrate SDGs in the different cultures involved. A content analysis of group reports delivered by students was carried out. In addition, intercultural competence development was measured through a questionnaire. Results show that the IVC project contributed to raising students’ awareness of how companies approach SDGs and adapt their products to different cultures. Students were also perceived to have developed intercultural knowledge, intercultural virtual teamwork, intercultural attitudes and intercultural awareness.