Top 21 FAQs About Implementing CulturaGo Courses in Your Programs

Nov 08, 2022
Hot air balloons flying over ancient pagodas, Myanmar.

Bringing something new and innovative to the world means that we get a host of questions from higher education, travel and work abroad organizations.

If you are here, it means that you have questions for us. You are curious about CulturaGo and what we offer, and you want to know more. This blog is dedicated to listing and answering the 21 most common FAQs that CulturaGo receives when discussing the ins and outs of offering our cultural preparation courses. 

We value your inquisitive spirit, so let’s dive in!

 

1. What is CulturaGo?

CulturaGo is a US-based ed-tech company whose mission is to educate the world about cultures. We do so by creating destination-specific online cultural preparation courses with the help of our decentralized team that spans continents, skills and time zones.

2. What do CulturaGo courses contain? 

Our courses are made up of short, self-contained lessons that are grouped together into larger modules for easier navigation. Each lesson is designed to introduce everyday life in the country and support the adjustment process through an interactive learning environment that mixes informative text, kep tips, captivative imagery and engaging video testimonials. The topics covered by our courses (in further detail) include: 

  • Local communication styles
  • Different regions of the country
  • Public customs and etiquette
  • The educational and working environment
  • Free time, activities and dating
  • Guidance on Health & Safety and how to adjust
  • Being part of an under-represented group

Using our Introduction to Japanese Culture course as an example, here is the structure:

  • Module 1 - Japan at a Glance
  • Module 2 - Regions of Japan
  • Module 3 - Japanese Customs and Etiquette
  • Module 4 - Culture Shock and Adjusting to Life in Japan
  • Module 5 - Becoming a Local
  • Module 6 - Identities, Diversity, and Inclusion in Japan

3. What is the aim of CulturaGo courses?

The aim of CulturaGo courses is to give our learners a solid foundation to successfully engage with the culture of their destination. Our courses are designed to:

  • Improve cultural intelligence 'CQ'.
  • Reduce culture shock.
  • Enhance one's experience abroad.
  • Improve one’s general well-being.
  • Enhance health & safety preparation.
  • Increase academic performance and employability.

4. What countries does CulturaGo offer courses for? 

We currently offer cultural preparation courses for South Korea, Japan, Spain, Italy and the UK. More information is available on CulturaGo’s course page.

5. Who creates CulturaGo courses?

Our courses are truly the product of team effort and skill. The text for our courses is written by expert authors, predominently anthropologists or sociologists, who have real lived experience in the country, while the video content scattered throughout the modules features our course guides and interviews that we collected from our local and expat contributors about life in each country. Our Identity-based modules are written by specialist authors on Gender, Sexuality, Ethnicity and Race for each destination. Finally, every course is audited by established academics with specialist knowledge of each country who make sure that our content is accountable and up-to-date.

6. How long does it take to complete a CulturaGo course? 

Each learner is different, and different styles of learning will impact learners’ completion time. That said, on average 6-module courses (Spain, Italy, Japan, South Korea) tend to take around 5 and 7 hours to complete, while 4-module courses like Introduction to UK Culture take between 3 and 4 hours.

7. How is information around diverse identities incorporated into your material?

We take an intersectional approach and in our growing identity-based DEI modules, we further explore what it is like to be part of an under-represented group in each destination, whether that be due to race, ethnicity, sexuality, or gender identity. Our Identity-based modules, called Identities, Diversity and Inclusion, provide relevant information for under-represented groups so that they feel safer, can better connect with those around them and become more aware of the challenges they may encounter abroad.

8. How do your courses differ from traditional pre-departure support materials?

Traditional pre-departure material tends to be generic and does not account for the cultural, political and logistical differences of each destination. This creates confusion, in that a lot of the information provided is too abstract or simply does not apply to a specific country. CulturaGo, on the other hand, is committed to creating in-depth pre-departure material that is country-specific, practical and that includes the points of view of locals and expats who live in the country. This means that our courses only contain carefully curated information that is relevant to our learners’ experience and easy to apply in real life situations.

9. How can I access CulturaGo courses?

You can access our courses through our login page. Our platform supports both desktop and mobile use, so you can learn from your laptop or on the go, during your commute or in your downtime. It’s that easy.

10. Is the course self-paced or is there a lecturer? 

We believe that learning should happen at each learner’s pace. Our courses are completely self-paced, meaning that learners can access them when they have time without the pressure of completing them in one go. They can leave and resume according to their schedules. There is no lecturer, but our course guides provide contextualization to each module by sharing their experiences. 

11. Is there a specific amount of time students have to complete the course? 

No. Once learners receive their personal login, there is no expiration date nor time limit. They can complete the course before departure and go back to the material whenever they are looking for tips and advice, or if they wish to share their experience with the rest of the CulturaGo community by commenting at the end of each lesson.

12. Can I try out a CulturaGo course for free, whilst I consider offering this resource to my students?

Sure! We are happy to provide you and other members of your organization with free access to the full version of our courses. Feel free to get in touch via our contact us form.

Demo versions of all CulturaGo courses are also available by signing up for free on our website:

13. How can I integrate CulturaGo courses into my pre-departure process?

CulturaGo’s cultural preparation courses are not designed to replace the pre-departure procedures already in place at your institution. Instead, the courses are tools to help you further support your students before and during their experience abroad.

There are multiple ways to integrate our courses in your pre-departure process. You can offer each course to your students as part of their pre-departure package on its own free of conditions, or use them alongside in-person sessions. You can also assign credits for the completion of our courses, or make it a prerequisite for students to access their study abroad experiences. This way you can ensure that your students benefit from the information offered in our courses and you will be able to make full use of your investment.

14. What partnership options are available and how does the pricing work?

Every institution’s needs are different. That is why we offer Starter, Standard and Premium package options to reflect the amount of students you have, the size of your budget and the level of customization you need for your institution. You can find more information on our Partner Pricing page.

15. Why would I implement CulturaGo courses in my abroad programs?

Including CulturaGo’s courses can be of immense benefit for your students. Country-specific cultural preparation helps students to successfully communicate with the people around them, inside and outside of the classroom. They will be able to adjust to their new environment in a quicker and smoother way, so they can focus on their academic goals and make the most out of their experience abroad. Better communication is linked to less risk in terms of Health & Safety as culturally prepared students are better at communicating their needs and problems and know who to turn to.

For our partners, the courses are designed to:

  • Seamlessly integrate into pre-departure / arrival support packages, thus enhancing the levels of service and support provided by our partners.
  • Reduce rates of study and work abroad program dropout.
  • Reduce the need for the in-house creation and maintenance of such resources.
  • Enhance our partner's reputations as industry leaders, looking to actively address:
    • The accessibility and support their programs offer to minority identities.
    • Increase their approach to destination and identity-specific cultural preparation, which broadly covers: social, professional, educational, and Health & Safety.

16. Do CulturaGo courses aid experiential learning?

Yes. CulturaGo courses were designed with experiential learning as one of our core reference points. By gaining a better understanding of their new cultural context, learners are better equipped to face their study abroad experience as a learning cycle of action, reflection and experimentation that is aware and respectful of their destination’s culture.

17. Can I request customization of the courses?

Yes. Customization of the courses, such as the creation of co-branded or white-labeled materials, is available to our Premium Partners. If you are interested in offering a particular module to your students, get in touch with us or book a call.

18. How do I receive insight into students’ results?

Partners receive monthly, bi-annual, and annual reports depending on the Partner Package they choose. Our reports include insight on enrollment, completion and progress rates. We also welcome qualitative feedback from our learners after course completion and once they have returned from their time abroad. We are happy to include that in our reports whenever learners agree to share feedback publicly.

19. How long before departure should students take the course?

We recommend students to complete their cultural preparation courses a couple of weeks or more before departure. This is to ensure that they are in the right headspace to metabolize the information contained in the course before they are too busy with the final logistics of moving abroad. Once they complete the course, they have the option of going back to the course at any point while abroad, to revisit the material and share their experience.

20. How can I get my students to engage with the courses?

There are many ways to make sure that your students engage with our courses. We provide customized content packs to support enrollment and completion rates according to your Partner status, including customized presentation slides that your institution can use during in-person pre-departure sessions. Right after enrollment we greet learners with a welcome email and follow up with nudge emails. Whenever learners post a comment or a question on our platform, we provide personal communication to answer their queries. Assigning credits to completing the course or making it compulsory for study abroad students can also boost engagement. Finally, you can encourage your students to follow us on our Instagram and Facebook pages.

 21. Which countries will you be offering courses for in the future?

In the near future, we are planning to create cultural preparation courses for the US, Canada and France, with many more to come.

 

Did we forget something? No worries. You can find out more and inquire further by doing one or more of the following:

 

 

 

Culture made easy.


 

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