Due to modernization and rapid technology growth, working in multicultural environment is a common thing in these current times. People from diverse backgrounds with different cultures, values, norms, beliefs and conventions have found themselves working together to accomplish a common goal (Castellanos et al., 2007). Hence, this diversity comes with its advantages but it also brings along some negative effects; extreme care must be observed to ensure that individuals respect each other’s boundaries (Deprez, 2010). In the given scenario where technology class in the United States collaborated with an Arabic class but it ended up being terminated due to irresponsible flirting behavior. In thinking about the outcome of this scenario, the reason that led to the withdrawal of the Arab class is because the American teenage boys started veering off the main objective of the class by flirting cautiously with the girls in the class. To the Arabic culture, it is not allowed to flirt carelessly since their culture is very strict on relationships across the genders while else in the American culture it is not a big deal to flirt (Banks, et. al., 2013). The conflict in culture offended the Arabic teachers and resulted to them terminating the collaboration program so as t protect their girls.
To prevent such outcome, the teachers should have developed rules and regulations of undertaking the online class which outlines the expected behavior and conduct among the students as well as the consequences of violating them. This would have prepared the students psychologically and highlight on respecting other peoples’ boundaries in multicultural environment (Banks, et. al., 2013). Besides, the Arabic teachers would have liaised with the American class teachers to warn the boys of their irresponsible behavior before terminating the collaboration program. Probably this would have sorted the misunderstanding and allow for completion of the online class. Lastly, as a teacher recovering from this occurrence is psychologically disturbing and may result to misunderstanding and hinder future collaborations. The American class teachers would feel like they let the Arabic teacher for having boys with such unacceptable behaviors; they need to apologize on behalf of the class and iron out the issue. On the other hand, the Arabic teachers would feel betrayed for subjecting the girls in vulnerable environment; they need to reassure their girls that it was unfortunate that unacceptable behaviors occurred and promise better safety precaution in the future. Finally, an eLearning scenario exploring potential misunderstandings in the design of eLearning courses with potential international audiences could be language barrier where the content developed does not fit some cultures.
- Banks, et. al., (2013). Multicultural Education, ‘Multicultural Education: Characteristics and Goals’, ‘Culture, Teaching and Learning’, New York: John Wiley & Sons.
- Castellanos, J., Gloria, A. M., Mayorga, M. M., Salas, C. (2007). Student Affairs Professionals’ Self-report of Multicultural Competence: Understanding Awareness, Knowledge, and Skills. NASPA Journal, 44(4): 643-663.
- Deprez, M. (2010). The Use of Critical Literacy Practices with Young Children: For the Development of Social and Cultural Awareness. International Journal of Learning, 17(7), 479-485.