Global and Cultural Understanding

The ability to critically analyze and engage with complex, interdependent global systems, and legacies—natural, physical, social, cultural, economic, and political—and their implications for our lives and the Earth.

Global and Cultural Understanding asks one to focus on diversity amongst the perspectives, practices, and beliefs found within a given culture and across cultures, with particular attention to global perspectives, practices, and beliefs. Interactions with different people lead to functional knowledge of the relationship between individuals, groups, and historical, cultural, and social forces. In practicing Global and Cultural Understanding, one actively engages topics of environment, economic status, age, race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and religion, among others, enabling collaboration across the different scales of human organization.

Guiding questions

Can I clearly describe my own, and others’, positionality in the world?

In what ways has history contributed to cultural manifestations seen today?

What other cultures have intersected with a given culture over time?

How can I access and interact with a given culture without becoming obtrusive, onerous or harmful to members of this culture?

Where does a given culture exist in a geographic, historic, and global context, and in what ways does this locality affect its structure?

How deeply do my actions or inactions impact systems or contexts at local and global scales?